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Lakers Mailbag: Start sending your questions

Lakerslogo_200 In an effort to continually find ways to expand the blog, I thought it'd be a good touch to start doing a weekly mailbag.

Here's how it'll work. Send me a question or a topic suggestion in the comment threads or to my e-mail address listed at the bottom of the post. I'll then feature a mailbag post once a week where I answer some of your questions. We already do this in the comment threads and during the live chats, but this will be for questions that require a little more depth and research than just having a free-flowing chat.

Looking forward to reading what topics you'd like me to address.

--Mark Medina

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

 
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Hey everyone. Just a reminder. I will be taking off on weekends throughout the offseason. I'll have a few posts for Memorial Day but that will be minimal too because of the Holiday. We'll get back into full swing first thing on Tuesday

I like what y'all are saying about the athletic players.

I just want to make sure I understood ya'll.

Are y'all saying that it's OK to break a sweat when you play basketball?

That running up & down the court is a desirable behavior?

That you want the multi-millionaire your sponsoring to be an athlete as
opposed to just being tall?

Because we know that our length was so tremendously useful against
Dallas.


@NUGGETSCOUNTRY … Excellent post. I assume a portion of your anger is over how we finished the season and some of your comments regarding Andrew and Kobe were directed at me. For the record, I’ve never said I consider Drew to be anywhere close to being Kobe’s equal on this team. Nor do I buy in on the view that we are now entering the Bynum era. Nor do I think Jim Buss does. What I do think is that the front office grew tired of seeing the Lakers including Kobe fail to take advantage of their superior height and length and decided to send a clear message of changes to come.

The Lakers goal is to win as many championships as possible while Kobe Bryant is in his prime. I think the front office believed that continuing with the same coaching staff and systems was not going to be the right answer. The team’s performance during their early dismissal from the playoffs at the hands of the Dallas Mavericks pretty much made it pretty clear that this group of players, including Kobe Bryant, was no longer listening to this coaching staff or following their instructions. That’s why I think the Lakers decided to make a change and decided not to discuss the change with Kobe.

I don’t have a doubt that the decision to not involve or discuss the coaching situation with Kobe was a deliberate and strategic move by the Lakers. I also don’t have a doubt that the decision was likely a unanimous one supported by Jerry Buss and Mitch Kupchak as well as Jim Buss. The Lakers may not have handled the situation the way some would have liked but they also did not just forget to talk to perhaps the greatest player ever to don the purple and gold by accident. This was done on purpose.

I think the Lakers want to pull Kobe back into the framework of the team both on offense and defense. That’s why all the talk about teamwork and family. Obviously, the front office believed the trust issue raised by Andrew Bynum was more than just a disgruntled player blowing smoke. Nor do I think they liked Kobe’s comments about a pecking order. Something happened between the 17-1 post all-star game run and the late season and playoff collapse to completely destroy the team’s chemistry and synergy. The front office must obviously feel that part of that problem was due to Kobe Bryant.
………………………………………………………….
TOM


Finally figured out this new sign-in process...#WINNING!(LOL)

I got no questions at this time...I'll try to think of some for a future post.

~

Well, lookin' ahead to the finals, it should be a good series. I like the Mavs to win in 6 or 7, I think they will avenge their '06 loss to the Heat and Dirk,The Jet,JKidd,Shawn, and Peja can all get their first rings...but it won't be easy. I expect a tough, hardfought series...should be entertaining.

@LRob:Glad you enjoyed the great 'Ray Brown', definitely a true Jazz master on the bass.

~

For today's musical contribution, Imma go with another Jazz legend...enjoy!


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ns6i4YAe11Y

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4AGQQhFSy5g&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v4KTFtytyR4&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6jwu7XA1tHo&feature=related

~


Let's go Ls...and make a comeback next season!!!!!

@PSYCORP … Thanks for your comments. If there salaries were equal, I would prefer to keep Lamar over Pau mainly because I think he has more heart. Pau to me has always been sort of an enigma. I like players with more heart and Pau just leaves me cold as a fan, especially after his total collapse. The reality is that you would have to get back Chris Paul or Deron Williams if you’re giving up Pau whereas Lamar at half the salary has ten times the chance of finding a viable trade deal.

Your comment did make me think about whether Drew and Lamar would be a better 5/4 duo than Drew and Pau. While I don’t buy the Jerry West theory that Drew and Pau together are too slow, there is not doubt that Drew and Lamar would make the Lakers a faster quicker team. Bottom line, even though losing Lamar hurts the bench, it’s easier to replace a bench player than starter.

One intriguing thought I had last night was wondering what Mike Brown might do with the Triple Towers defensively. There were moments when that lineup played some awesome defense in Game 3 against the Mavericks. The height and length of Drew, Pau, and Lamar was stifling, cutting off the passing lanes, walling off penetrators, and sealing off the paint. We might even see a Big Five lineup from Mike Brown. The more I think about it, I’m really looking forward to seeing what happens.
……………………………………………….
TOM


I too want to see Pau go over any other big (well TR & JS & DC are gone already). His usefulness to this TEAM was lost in whatever inexcuseable funk he went into and exhibited late last season. Agree that we don't need pouters like that. I mean even when Kobe has pouted in the past he has put it out there on the court in directed anger at the Laker opponents.

I also believe that Pau has the best trade value to someone who has assets we need. I don't know exactly who that might be, but that is why MK gets paid the big bucks.

I don't like the ups and downs of LO's game, but he has a good heart anyway and major uniqueness in his skill set, so if we are talking about trades of one of our prime assets then my hopes are that it is Pau that goes. Now, if we could get back some amazing stars (unlikely another NBA GM will want to gift us a ring), then go for it. I would prefer trading Pau over AB or LO. But.......Howard.......in a heartbeat for any of them! I don't see trading AB for anybody but Howard or a combo trade where we get back a STAR center (just because someone is referred to as a 5 does not mean they can play CENTER). AB can.

The 5th leading scorer in NBA history (after January? next season) is Kobe, so ignoring that is at the risk of angering Kobe and his drive, which is second to none. he is within reach of Jordan's point total within 3 years. Running an offense that hopefully has some shooters that will have to be covered will open up the middle for AB/LO/KB and get the double and triple teams off KB. This next season, IMO, will determine whether or not Kobe decides to hang 'em up early or ride the string further to 19 years in the league or so. If he sees Jim Buss wasting his time with arrogance, I suspect he will call it a day at the end of his current contract or ask to be traded sooner. I don't believe for a minute that Jerry or Mitch is driving the ship, now, BTW. So, Mike Brown is the least of the Lakers 'problems', IMO. They need to get some trades or MLE players in to help and start to utilize the youth they have already available!

And, BTW, I think the biggest and best change has already happened - a semi-interested PJ riding into the sunset! It was obvious to me all last season that his heart wasn't in it and players sense that right away. Hard to overcome a disinterested coach who is tagging along just because his vets asked him to come along for the ring quest. A coach needs to be among those pulling the wagon, not riding in it.

Not all PJ's fault, just is what it was............


Don't know why you guys are all over the quick point guard thing. Westbrook is quick, so is Rose, so is Rondo. You what they have in common? Whose left? A 39 year old Point and I don't even know who Miami's point is.

Lakers need another athletic 3 to bang with Lebron - that's it.

Posted by: HmrHed | May 27, 2011 at 03:49 PM
---
Miami's starting PG is the slow, unathletic 33-year old Mike Bibby.

BTW, your info on Kidd is incorrect; he is not that old. He is only 38 years old.

*******************SHALLOW THOUGHTS by Troll Man******************

1. MM deviously sabotaged this blog to get the typepad sign-in format. It's what the bosses wanted. Don't be surprised when nothing happens after he meets with his so called bosses to discuss our complaints.

2. Stupid (or I need 2 more to make my quota) Thread alert ----Soccer and Trey Johnson (who cares what this scrub thinks)

3. Who would of thunk it. Island Priest and GMoney giving each other props. Just for the record, Lebron still has not won a ring and the whole Dallas team knows how to score unlike the Heat's playoff opponents so far. In the famous words of coach Denny Green ""You want to crown them, go ahead and crown their ass"

4. LakerTom don't get to excited about comments posted on typepad, that is an option of typepad that can be changed.

5. The Bulls coulda used a player like Kobe Bryant against the Meat. Can anyone say steroids?

6. For those bloggers who want their privacy, do this.... sign-up to a new facebook account then do the typepad registration. Once in typepad go to their option of signing in exclusively with them (just a password needed). Then deactivate your Facebook account.

7. On Jim Buss....He is "The Man" now, and I can see him thinking that todays athletes and coaches think a little to highly about themselves. It's his show, players and coaches come and go but owners always have the last say. Just ask Shaq.

8. PSP this is for you, a comment from 888
"I admit that it was more wishful thinking than anything else that we would three-peat this season, but I'm a fan. I am also a fan who admits when he's wrong and doesn't disappear wagging his tail between his legs when he's wrong..." ROTF LMFAO

dice8up

click-on your "Richard" handle it will send you to your typepad page. Then click-on "edit your profile" and change your display name to dice8up .

when I first did this it didn't go through right away. Not sure if you have to wait a few minutes or what. But I did it a second and third time and it finally updated.

Hobbit you are being sarcastic but your premise is wrong. Kobe refused to pass the ball to the bigs. So did the rest of the wing players. Even kobe complained about it while saying he will do what he does. If we did play inside out then we would have beat dallas. In game 3 Drew had a dominant 1st half but guess how many shots he had after that. 2. Troll Man I am very surprised that you are the last regular blogger to figure out how to use Type Pad. Hahaha. No I'm just joking it is actually guys like mud and sean who needs help. Gmoney is a heat fan but I am a laker fan who marvels at the dominance of king james. Hating lbj is like hating the sun. Because a) the sun don't give a sheet and b) the sun will still shine. LBJ is playing out of his mind on both defense and offense. When was the last time kobe played defense like that? On top of that lbj is playing 46 minutes per game and simply dominant from start to finish. We as lakers fans should all rally behind king james because it is the patriotic thing to do. Remember dirk is from nazi germany.

Laker tom you are spot on because i made the same observations. However, I wrote about chemistry issues from a month or 2 into the regular season. It was unpopular and i was attacked from persons like justa, sean, hobbit, mud etc. But in the end we all see that the priest was right. When drew complained about trust issues there was an immediate attempt to white wash it. Kobe said that he was probably talking about on the defensive end. Of course medina who always agrees with whatever the mamba states wrote the same nonsense. If drew was talking about defense he would have stated that instead of an open comment. We all know drew was complaing about the one black mamba. It stemmed from kobe's pecking order doctrine. Hobbit a karate man fails to see that pecking order basketball is just bad basketball. First of all it should never be stated publically. The comment reeked of insecurity because the media was fawning over the beast. Secondly, you go to your advantage regardless of pecking order. The advantage may switch from game to game as the opposing team make adjustments.

Jim Buss is restoring order and discipline in lakerdom. I love it. Yall remember what kobe said in a post game interview during the regular season? He said if he was on the bench and the team starts to slip that he would check himself back into the game. That was so disrespectful to the coach. It was unbelievable. The kobe snub of not being informed about Brown was calculating and deliberate. Kobe had to be brought back into line. Listen I know I am more intelligent than you guys but I am just a fan. If I could observe the detrimental activities of kobe imagine the persons who have invested $100 million plus for the 2010-2011 season. Or I am sure mitch noticed it as well. Kobe sabotauged this season by his out of control ego. It was interesting that brown talked about family and team first. That was his mandate given to him by jim buss. When the guys have fun out there the lakers are a hard team to beat.

Bynum is the lakers focus and future and kobe must accept that. The howard for drew trade is fantasy. Howard is more athletic than drew and is the top center. But drew is fundamentally sound and is a real beast. If kobe allowed drew to shine then the lakers will still be plaing right now. But let us look at that from kobe's perspective. Bean is trying to establish that he is the greatest ever and still the league's premiere player. So can you imagine if drew start playing lights out ball. If Drew gets 18 shots a game he would average about 26 points a game and will quickly be annointed la's best. No way would kobe allowed that to happen who still have shaq nightmares. Unlike shaq drew can hit his free throws.

Was it LBJ's and Wade's defense on Rose or just the exposing of a young player who can't shoot and not handling big time pressure.

Give Rose a year or two and the same scenario and I would expect a different result

some posters are all giddy that the quick point guards are out of the finals, trying to somehow relate that to our own PG situation and minimizing the weakness at the position. Really now, you think I'm not gonna call that out?

this was written:

Hobbit you are being sarcastic but your premise is wrong. Kobe refused to pass the ball to the bigs. So did the rest of the wing players. Even kobe complained about it while saying he will do what he does. If we did play inside out then we would have beat dallas.

my response: Actually, Kobe did pass the ball to his bigs. So did the rest of
the players. Which is why Bynum had the best numbers *EVER* in the
playoffs.

Which is why Pau was mad at himself.

Which is why Phil hit Pau in the chest.

this was also written: If kobe allowed drew to shine then the lakers will still be plaing right now.

my response: This is also wrong. You obviously know less than I do. There
was this little thing called the bench. There was this other thing called 3-pt
shooting.

The Mavs shot the lights out. J-Kidd, J-Terry, D-Novitsky, Peja & J.J. Barea
were all contestants on "Top Shot" and they shot us into the ground. In
case you're still missing it.

1. Pass the ball to Bynum. = 2-pts.
2. Pass the ball to Peja = 3-pts.

That math doesn't work in favor of the Lakers.

Their bench escorted our bench to the gate and said, "Have a nice vacation."

Thanks Troll Man...

This Kobe thing the priest is saying is all a pigment of his wierd imagination. tsk tsk... grow up.

I agree with the assessment of hobbit...

If you stop and think for just a minute.It's very clear that the front office are preparing for the future to be all about Andrew Bynum.Expect to see the ball in the post more often.If this move was about keeping Kobe happy then they would have made him part of the process...It's as clear as day.

test

I.P.- Dude...I am a Heat fan and also little the Lakers organization not so much Kobe. I agree with hobbitmage regarding the three point shooters, but you've stated a true fact. That Kobe will never let Drew get to comfortable in the offensive flow, his development would destroy Kobe's ego. He's trying to cement his legacy....at all COST. C'mon Drew remember the peaking order, don't listen to those CLOWNS on that L.A Times blog. Pass the popcorn the games about to start.

And in the best news of all for my cardiologist! : We won't have to sit through the agony of 16+ point runs by the other team without a timeout!!!! Actual coaching will take place - not just play through it crap! YYAAAAAA!

What do we know about Brown?
1. Defensive minded coach.
2. Dumped the ball in the hands of his superstar Lebron on the offensive end.

Point 1 addresses a key weakness in our team and point 2 plays into the hands of Kobe. For those 2 reasons I like this pick.

As for some other comments others have made:
1. Not consulting Kobe is a signal 2 him that the organization is moving in another direction.
2. Trading Pau is a better move than trading Bynum or Lamar

Umm stop drinking crazorade people, it's obviously detrimental to your sanity. This is still Kobe's team and we're still at our best when Pau is supporting him at an all-star level. Both of those players had subpar performances against Dallas and that more than anything is the reason why we got sent home.

Lastly the biggest concern in La La land at this point is the possibility that Kobe n co are not happy with the coaching choice and that becomes a distraction come next season. I share those concerns but I think after the 3 kings get crowned in Miami, this team will be hell bent on dethroning them. And whom better to lead them than the coach the King exiled in cleveland.

So enough huffing and puffing people, next season is a long long way aways ... and oh none of this is an endorsement of Jimmy Bus Boi the retard ... yup I said it ... but u were already thinking it ...

Gotta love it.

From the LAT mailbag:

---

Bill Plaschke recently wrote the following about the Lakers hiring Mike Brown as their next coach: "If the Lakers hire Brown as their next coach, it's a sign that the Buss family once again seems intent on conducting a coaching search as if they are smarter than everyone else."

They've won 10 NBA championships beginning in 1980. They are smarter than everyone else.

Jim Gillespie

Temecula

---

@MM - Here's a couple of couples. Mitch Kupchak stated the Lakers interviewed 3 candidates for the HC position. One of the LAT columnist wrote they only interviewed one candidate. Which is correct?

Mike Brown was criticized in Cleveland for appearing to be a bystander in huddles while assistants were drawing up plays/giving instructions . This happened one time in particular during the 2010 playoffs. My question is what did Mike Brown think of that criticism and what is the role of his assistant coaches in timeouts. Is his structure in these situations different than most other head coaches?


@Leo Goose - count me among those that likes your new handle much better :-)

@GDUB - Another legend indeed. Was listening to some Dinah Washington recently where Max-Cliff Brown Quintet was the backing band...excellent.

Gmoney the priest tries to be entertaining and accurate. All true laker fans should rally behind America's King. Oh k I know it is not kobe in the finals but LBJ is an american hero. Dirk is from germany you know the country that tried to take over the world in the 1940's? Dirk's great great grandfather was Adolph. People says LBJ doesn't have a killer instinct? Look at the way he crowned the midget mvp with his royal sceptre. To add insult to injury he swatted rose's last feeble shot into the 5th row. LBJ have the skill of jordan and magic. We have never witnessed a player with the best of 2 worlds. A man who can leap out of the building and score at will yet has the vision of magic and makes easy plays for his teammates.

The Lakers biggest need is at point guard. Right behind that would be a scorer from small forward position.

The Lakers two strengths are at shooting guard and in the frontcourt. Moving L.O. or Pau should be only to bring in a point guard or a small forward.

Dwight Howard is lurking, everyone is waiting for him to go 'Melo on the Magic and demand a trade - but the fact is we have an excellent, young center (despite a lot of unwarranted bashing around these parts!) so Dwight is NOT as important as picking up a premiere point guard, CP3 for instance would be infinitely more valuable a pickup than Howard.

If we trade a core-piece of this team, L.O. probably would have the highest trade value coming off his 6th man award and incredible versatility.

If Mitch is able to get any value at all for Luke or Ron Ron they should scrap the plans for the Kareem statue and depict him instead.

As for the Finals: GO MAV'S!
Prediction: Heat in 6


AS ALWAYS - AND FOREVER - GO LAKERS!!!!!!

latopia,

Good post.
We should give Jimmy & Company a chance to prove themselves.
Let's see the results of the decisions before we judge them.

Cyber,

I can't see how a trade could work for CP.
I don't see why they (the NBA owns them) would do it.
Who would the players be?

Any trade of Gasol will be a problem due to his salary of almost $18 mill.

I like your comment about Mitch and Kareem's statue and totally agree.


I see you are rooting for the Mavs but pick the Heat.

I'll be rooting for the Mavs too, but can't pick a winner.

Looks like a toss up to me, it'll be up to who can battle through the pressure and perform.

@Cyber – If the Lakers can get Dwight for either Pau or Drew…it’s a no brainer. I can see Dwight and Pau playing together…(high/low post) than I can vision Dwight and Drew. As far as PG’s go…CP3 and DWill are in the same position as Howard….2012 is the last year on each of their contracts…and all of them can say they’re not going to re-sign. I prefer DWill over CP3 because of his size…and because of CP3’s knee injury. Having said that I don’t think a great PG is essential. No team has won a title with a great PG since the Pistons with Isiah. The formula has been great wings/great big men.

I'll be rooting for the Mavs also (the lesser of two evils...lol), but I'm predicting the Heat in 7

Hobbit:

Kobe's haters are out in drove! Thanks for defending him. There were no base as it has been alleged by other bloggers that Kobe sabotaged the season and the progress of AB. We lost to Dallas because lack of bench players, Pau's slum and Fisher's inability to contribute.

I'm rooting for the Mavs since I hate the Heats!!!

Wallace

SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT
............................................................
Before I get branded by hobbitmage and NC as a Kobe hater, I would like to set the record straight as where I stand on the various Kobe related issues that have dominated the last few days on the blog.
............................................................
(1) Do I think the Lakers intentionally did not discuss the hiring of Mike Brown with Kobe?
...
Yes, I think the Lakers wanted a clean start where it was obvious no player, even including Kobe Bryant, was above the team. It was a message that change would be needed from EVERY player. There was no intent to disrespect Kobe, just to let everybody know that things would be different.
..............................................................
(2) What specific changes do I think that the Lakers want Kobe Bryant to make?
...
I think the Lakers want Kobe to stay within the team game plan both on offense and defense. That means leading the effort to get the ball inside on offense and not playing free safety on defense. I think Kobe will still be the leading scorer and take the most shot attempts but with improve shot selection. I also think a healthy Kobe will attack the rim to get to the line and involve our bigs.
..............................................................
(3) How do I think Kobe will react to the alleged message being sent by the front office?
...
I think it’s silly to worry that Kobe will go ballistic and reprise his demands from 2006. Like he said, Kobe is just confused right now but will ultimately embrace the call to team basketball. Remember Kobe measures his legacy by the number of rings won, not points scored or MVP awards received. He is too smart a player not to realize that the Lakers front office wants to win just as much as he does.
..............................................................
(4) Do I think that Kobe Bryant sabotaged the Lakers chances to three-peat this year?
...
No, that is just ridiculous takes from posters who are more troll than fan. While Kobe did not have the magic of previous post-seasons, there was never anything but the usual die-hard 100% effort to win from Kobe. With Pau disappearing, Kobe at times probably tried to do too much and it was obvious that he was hampered by injuries and the wear and tear of so many extra games every year.
..............................................................
(6) Do I think that Andrew Bynum should now become the focus of the Lakers offense?
...
No, I think the focus of the offense should be the player who is hot or has the most advantageous matchup? In most cases, that will still be Kobe Bryant, but against certain teams, it may be Drew or Pau or Lamar or Ron. If Drew has a big first half, the smart move is to continue feeding him the ball in the second half. Same if Kobe is on fire, find ways to get him the ball where he has a great shot. I just think the entire concept of an offensive pecking order is out of order on a team with so many options. While the Lakers may want Kobe to change his game some, this is still his team and he is still Kobe.
............................................................
TOM

Art: Yeah. The problem with the Hornets trading away Darren Collison last year is that they put all their eggs in CP3's basket, so yeah, I see what you're saying. They did that move to get under the salary cap by the trade deadline - and to send a message that CP3 was their guy.

They don't need L.O. as much as another team might since they already have David West. If they wanted say Pau the salaries aren't that far apart that a throw-in couldn't make it work. With Okafor in the middle they have a decent big man. Since the Lakers couldn't offer them a starter-quality point guard in return seems like the odds of it happening would be pretty remote.

But the Hornets intention from what I've seen since the season ended is to do whatever they can to keep him.

I keep thinking Raymond Felton could be an odd-man out in Denver. J.R. Smith is a free agent, and although he's a headcase he can flat-out shoot. A sign-and-trade for L.O.? Don't know, they played Felton/Ty Lawson together successfully for stretches during the postseason. But making that move might solve two or our issues at once, PG & offense at the small forward position. Maybe they might even take back Luke along in return... poor Luke...

- - -

LRob: It would be interesting to see if Jimmy becomes stubborn regarding his pet project, Drew - especially if Dwight drops word that he wants out of Orlando. Of all the Lakers - save possibly Kobe - I think Drew has the highest trade value. So there is no doubt that if Otis Smith discussed trading Howard then he'd want Drew back and not Pau. He probably would want to package Arenas too, maybe Mitch could throw Ron Ron/Luke into a deal as well.

But with Bynum the Lakers arguably have a top-2 center. More gifted than Howard on the offensive side. Playing for a defensive-minded coach and coaching-staff should improve Bynum's defense. Drew is younger, too.

Although, of course, it's always the health-factor regarding Drew, and Dwight is one of the most durable players in the entire league.

Ultimately, I think they would do it for one over-riding reason: The Lakers new mega-TV deal. Dwight has star-power that Bynum lacks.

It's safe to say the Lakers have the worst (harsh word -but none other comes to mind) point guards in the league. New coach/system coming in makes it imperative they improve at the position. That should be goal #1 for Mitch.

I agree with you in that we don't need a premiere point guard in order to compete. A speedy, penetrating one that can play competent defense would suffice. I'm also with you regarding D-Will over CP3 (although I'd be more than happy for either! lol...). D-Will is a better scorer. The Nets might be more willing to deal for Pau or L.O. in order to move him too.

I always root for the West, so like you I'll root for the Mavs too. Also can't stand the Heat either. If Heat win this title, as it appears they will, the floodgates might open for them. Riley is sure to improve the roster, LeBron will have a ton of bricks worth of pressure taken off his shoulders, I bet this will make him an even finer player. I wouldn't be surprised to see them roll a couple-straight titles.

You called their excellence early-on though. What they've done with some holes in their roster is pretty incredible.

I'm hoping the Mavs could somehow keep the lid closed on them, or heaven-help the rest of the league for the next few years...


AS ALWAYS - AND FOREVER - GO LAKERS!!!!!!

My bad, I should re-read my comments before I hit post and not after! Collison wasn't traded at the trade deadline, it was last offseason. Had their salary-cap-saving moves on the brain.


AS ALWAYS - AND FOREVER - GO LAKERS!!!!!!

INTERESTING NEWS FROM HOOPSHYPE
.........................................................................
The New Orleans Hornets have granted the Lakers permission to interview Mike Malone for an assistant job on newly hired Mike Brown's staff, according to league sources. Prior to the joining the Hornets, Malone spent five seasons as an assistant on Brown's staff with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Brown is seeking to hire assistants that he's work with before. New Orleans Times-Picayune
...
Brown has contacted New Orleans Hornets Coach Monty Williams to express his interest in having Hornets assistant Michael Malone join him in Los Angeles, according to an NBA official briefed on the matter who was not authorized to speak publicly. Los Angeles Times
...
The Hornets are mulling their options with Malone, the official said, because he is the No.1 assistant in New Orleans. But the official said the Hornets don't want to keep anybody around who doesn't want to be there. Brown and Malone worked together in Cleveland for five years before the Cavaliers fired Brown after the 2009-10 season, and Malone joined the Hornets for the 2010-11 season. Los Angeles Times
.........................................................................
TOM



@ART & CCX ... How about Paul Gasol ($18.7M) and Steve Blake ($4.0M) for Chris Paul ($16.4M) and Trevor Ariza ($6.8M)? That would leave the teams with the following starting lineups:
.........................................
Position/Lakers/Hornets
.........................................
PG/Chris Paul/Jarrett Jack
SG/Kobe Bryant/Marco Bellinelli
SF/Ron Artest/David West
PF/Lamar Odom/Pau Gasol
CE/Andrew Bynum/Omeka Okafor
.........................................
TOM

Something happened between the 17-1 post all-star game run and the late season and playoff collapse to completely destroy the team’s chemistry and synergy. The front office must obviously feel that part of that problem was due to Kobe Bryant.
………………………………………………………….
TOM


Posted by: LakerTom | May 27, 2011 at 08:04 PM

Aloha Laker Tom,

Something happened alright and it had nothing to do with Kobe or chemistry. During the 17-1 run we shot over 37% from 3. After that the shots stopped falling and teams quit guarding our "shooters". During the Mav's series it was around 22%. Dallas had a couple of 7 footers to play in the paint and they usually had at least two other players down low, flooding the paint. And "our shooters" could not hit an open look. If we had say a Jason Terry, we would be in the finals.

While Pau had a terrible series, it was not all his fault. He is just a scape goat. We all know that he is a finesse player and needs space to operate. He had none. And like all offensive minded players, when their shot isn't falling it effects other areas of their game. Remember the first part of the season and Pau was being mentioned as a MVP candidate? Blake, Brown, Fish and Lamar were all shooting from the low to high 40's from 3. And Ron was shooting 39.5!

It effected Andrew as well. Yes he had two decent offensive games but he is stronger and can handle the contact better then Pau. Still he usually had 3 guys around him every time he touched the ball. What would his game have been
like if our "shooters" had spread the floor?

There is all of this talk about trading Andrew for Howard. Offensively it wouldn't matter without shooters to spread the floor. As a matter of fact it would be worse because Howard doesn't have the post moves that Andrew has.

I would love a better PG but it won't be Cris Paul unless the NBA finds a buyer for the Hornets and all indications are that D-Will wants to stay with the Nets.

So should we trade a big for lesser talent? Personally I would go after JR smith or Jason Richardson if there is still a MLE next year. I would also hand the PG over to Blake and bring Fish off the bench. I think Blake will be much better in a more traditional offense.

Something tells me though that baby Buss is not done flexing his newly acquired muscle and I do look for a big trade. For me that points to Golden State. They have two point guards starting and are looking to trade for a legitimate big. With Jerry West there look for a trade involving Pau. West loves Pau.

Ellis, Beidrens and their 1st round pick for Pau. Beidrens has a 9 mil a year contract that they want to dump, thats how we get their number 1. But he is only 25 and was averaging 12ppg and 12 boards in 30 minutes before his injury a couple years ago. The word is that he is recovered but has lost some confidence. As a back up in a new setting he might get it back. Then we spend the pick on a back up shooter or power forward.

Anyway just my thoughts. Aloha for now.

Michael H


@CCX ... Lamar Odom for Raymond Felton has always been my personal choice for a trade. Felton really had a break out year for him last year and did it playing for two different teams. The guy has excellent speed and quickness, plays solid defense, can get into the paint, and can hit the open 3.
A Lakers line up of Felton, Kobe, Artest, Odom, and Bynum would be formidable. A shooter like JR Smith off the bench might also make up for the loss of the 6MOY.
.........................................
The thing to remember about CP3 is that he has the same power that Carmelo had and Dwight Howard has – he can basically force a trade by declaring he will not resign with New Orleans. I think that Chris is going to do exactly that, which will lead to a bidding war and getting back a Pau Gasol on a long contract could be the best deal the Hornets (and the NBA) can make. I’ve never liked Chris because I always thought of him as a dirty player but I could forgive him if he were a Laker. LOL.
.........................................
TOM



@MICHAEL H.... Aloha. Excellent points about the shooting but I still contend there was friction about what we may not know until Phil publishes his next book but the team definitely did one of the biggest 180 degree reverses I have ever seen. If Mike Brown can get Drew and this team to play defense at the level they did during that run, the Lakers will win their 17th championship next year. The big question is could they do it with the same personnel that produced that 17-1 run. Best bets are to trade either Pau or Lamar for an elite starting point guard and sign a shooter with the MLE.
...
As for Golden State, we will have to disagree. As a Bay area fan, I’ve watched all the players on the Warriors play and develop for several years. Biedrins is a ghost of his former self, primarily because he does not want the ball because that means there would be a chance he might have to shoot a free throw. As for Curry and Ellis, they are both short and do not play any defense, not at all what the Lakers need at the point. Ellis in fact cannot play the point at all. I love Curry’s stroke but if Fisher and Blake were defensive liabilities, you will not be totally disgusted with Curry’s effort or potential.
.........................................
TOM


LakerTom: Where's #5? lol... =P

Love Felton, I'd love that move. J.R. Smith would give the Lakers a scoring punch they have been lacking off the bench for years.

I'd be all for either Paul, or D-Will - if they could do it as Pau being the centerpiece, that would be outstanding. That's true about the league wanting to get back a longer, stable contract like Pau in return.

If Laker fans could accept Barnes coming to L.A., I guess we could accept anyone LOL.

BTW, I've never seen you fail to give Kobe credit, or not say he is the Lakers best player. It seems to irk a lot of people that you defend Drew, but you have also criticized his games and called him out when merited, too.

I thought what hurt the team offensively was atrocious shooting and no inside-out game. But, could anyone say if Pau, Ron Ron or D-Fish were even on the floor? I must have missed it if they were - along with missing if we even made a single perimeter jumper during the playoffs.

The offense was way off-kilter and defensively they were horrible. Other than that all was good... Phil in my eyes has to take a lot of that blame. This was a good time to make a change, especially for a defensive-minded coach.

Whoever says you're a 'Kobe hater' is simply trying to taint what you're saying though because you're definitely not.

Last I checked it was possible to be a Drew fan and also be a Kobe fan. If not I guess I'm a hater too...


AS ALWAYS - AND FOREVER - GO LAKERS!!!!!!


DWIGHT HOWARD BECOMING A LAKER JUST GOT COMPLICATED
By David Brickley for LakerNation
http://lakernation.com/2011/05/dwight-howard-becoming-a-laker-just-got-complicated/
.........................................
In August of last year, owner Dr. Jerry Buss said 80% of Lakers basketball decisions are in the hands of his son, Jim Buss.
...
So when Mike Brown has hired earlier this week, Jim became a popular name in Laker Land.
Those fans that do not agree or particularly like the hire, blame Jim for hiring Brown, and argue that Jim is “screwing” up the future of the Lakers.
...
According to Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak, Mike Brown was the “unanimous” choice between Dr.Buss, Jim Buss, and himself. [Kupchak also made it clear that the final say goes through Jerry Buss]
So there goes that argument.
...
That being said Jim Buss is clearly known for two things:
1. Not getting along with 11-Time Champion, and former head coach Phil Jackson
2. His obsession with Andrew Bynum, who Jim discovered, and pushed management to draft with the 10th pick of the 2005 draft.
...
If number two on that list needs additional clarification here it is.
...
According to Adrian Wojnarowski, from Yahoo! Sports. Sources tell him that Jim Buss has made it clear within the Lakers that Andrew Bynum is untouchable in trade talks.
...
Those that wanted to see a deal with the Orlando Magic trading injury-prone Bynum, in a deal to acquire Dwight Howard, may give up hope.
...
To add more insult to injury, according to ESPN’s NBA Insider Rick Bucher, the Lakers have “dropped” on Dwight Howard’s list of potential teams he will consider after his contract ends.
Bucher said that he believes it goes beyond the recent Yahoo! article that explained Jim Buss making it clear that Bynum is untouchable in trade talks:
...
“Lakers have slipped on Dwight’s list for reasons beyond that. I’d rank his preferences in this order: Orlando, Dallas, NJ, Lakers. But for Orlando to keep him, they’re going to have to make some serious deals, ones that I’m really doubtful they can pull off.” Bucher said in a SportsNation chat.
...
Bucher has been wrong before, and it you want some good news; don’t forget what Howard said on All-Star Weekend when he was asked by a reporter who is the one player he would like to play with.
“Number 24, Kobe Bryant”. Howard said without hesitation.
...
Howard would add, “He is just an unbelievable person to be around, talk to, and pick his brain, he’s great. He is a good guy, and that’s why I would want to have him on my team.” Howard said.
When asked about Kobe’s “rings” and championship success:
...
“Well you know, I don’t have any, so I wish I had some rings, and one day I will.”
The only question is what jersey Howard will be wearing when that day comes.
.........................................
TOM



@CCX ... Thanks for your comments, Mike. It always seems like we are on the same wavelength. Kobe is such a fantastic player that I do not see how anybody could hate him. But he is human and the job of trying to balance his out-of-this-world talent and drive with teammates to optimize the team’s performance is a juggling act we average humans cannot comprehend.
...
As for Drew, I was terribly disappointed in how he ended his year but nowhere near as disappointed as I was in how Pau Gasol let the team and the Lakers nation down with his heartless diminished play. That’s why when I hear Drew criticized and blamed for Pau being overworked earlier in the season, I feel like taking a baseball bat and knocking some sense into any blogger who makes such a comment.
...
Anyway, I think the Lakers made a good choice in Mike Brown. And I think once he and Kobe start to work together, Kobe will appreciate the team getting exactly the kind of coach to follow Phil that Kobe had wanted – a guy with defense as the core of his DNA. All the hullabaloo is just smoke and mirrors.
.........................................
TOM

Didn't The Priest state from couple of days ago that brown will hire malone? Malone is an offensive guru. For insightful and accurate info look no further than the priest folks. Jim Buss is a better leader than Jerry. Senior Buss is only interested in poker and 19 year old teenagers to beat. Jim first move as unpopular as it maybe was not to hire Shaw. This was important so that kobe will not have any enablers. Kobe must learn to play team ball if not he is out of here. Then Jim brought in a coach without consulting the prima donna Bean. Jimmy then gave Brown a mandate to implement a family atmosphere and team first. This was to adress the trust and chemistry issues expressed by the prodigy Beast. Now he need to get a quick and explosive pg. Go jimmy go forge your own identity.

The Priest is right almost 100% of the time. Didn't I state that the lakers were not as good as they think are? They had an easy playoff schedule last year with utah, okc and the suns. This year the 1st challemge and they gone fishing. Didn't I predict that the Heat will win the ring in the midst of their struggles? Didn't i state that lakers were suffering chemistry issues due to Bean? Didn't I predict that the lakers would not 3 peat? Didn't I predict that the lakers wanted doc rivers and that is why ainge quickly sign doc to a long term deal. The Priest represents the truth and is always here. False pretenders like justa start their own chat room. fakes and frauds like mamba, mud, sean, derek jeter disappear from the face of the earth. Where is the bus?

LakerTom,

I never thought you were a kobe-hater. I did and still do think you're a
Bynum lover. That means that your filter is always going to enhance
Bynum at the expense of everyone else. i.e. Since you believe that Bynum
can be the next great center, if given enough chances, you'll view everything
from the perspective of increasing his opportunity to be the next great center.
The concept of correct & incorrect doesn't really apply due to the bias.

you wrote:
1) Do I think the Lakers intentionally did not discuss the hiring of Mike Brown with Kobe?
...
Yes, I think the Lakers wanted a clean start where it was obvious no player, even including Kobe Bryant, was above the team. It was a message that change would be needed from EVERY player. There was no intent to disrespect Kobe, just to let everybody know that things would be different.
..............................................................
(2) What specific changes do I think that the Lakers want Kobe Bryant to make?
...
I think the Lakers want Kobe to stay within the team game plan both on offense and defense. That means leading the effort to get the ball inside on offense and not playing free safety on defense. I think Kobe will still be the leading scorer and take the most shot attempts but with improve shot selection. I also think a healthy Kobe will attack the rim to get to the line and involve our bigs.

my response:

dis·re·spect (dsr-spkt)
n.
Lack of respect, esteem, or courteous regard.

What the Lakers did to Kobe is most certainly a lack of respect, esteem and
courteous regard.

re: staying w/in team offense & defense.

Why do you focus on Kobe vs. Bynum who doesn't run back on defense?
It's the same thing over & over again. " Kobe waived off the offense. Kobe
broke the offense. Kobe doesn't pass the ball into the bigs. " If you like, I can
go through the last games and give you a minute by minute, quarter by
quarter play detailing how long it takes our bigs to get down court.

I'm sorry. I just watched the Lakers get swept while Kobe shot 1 or 2 times
less than before & play ~ 5 less minutes per game for an entire season. Bynum
didn't think enough of the regular season and went to the world cup instead
of getting his surgery. In 2009, he went to Italy instead of training with
Kareem. This past summer Pau took the summer off instead of staying in
basketball shape. Ron Artest has stunk offensively for 2 season. D-Fish
has had shooting issues for the last two season.

here's a better analysis.

In ~ 2005, someone in the Lakers organization leaked to the press that Kobe
was the cause of Shaq leaving the Lakers. In spite of the words of Dr. Jerry
Buss, Shaq & Kobe.

there have been repeated offers on the table for Bynum and the only Buss
with a vested interest in keeping Bynum is Jim Buss.

Since the person, in 2005, was never publicly revealed nor was it clear that
the person was fired, it is safe to assume that that person was Jim Buss.

In that line of reasoning, it is completely in keeping with the revealed nature
of Jim Buss, that he intended to disrespect Kobe Bryant.

More rumors about assistant coaches:

Mike Brown eyes Kuester, Malone for staff
May. 28 - 10:09 am et

Newly-hired Lakers coach Mike Brown has begun assembling his coaching staff, expressing interest in Hornets assistant Michael Malone and Pistons coach John Kuester.
There is a good chance that Kuester will be released by the Pistons this summer, at which point Brown seems eager to add him to the staff. Malone was the architect of Cleveland's defense during the years Brown coached the Cavs, and is largely responsible for vastly improving the Hornets' defense this year.

- - -

LakerTom: It's a blessing in disguise if Dwight doesn't insist on coming to L.A. If we can get him for Pau and whomever - great, but no way they accept that. Bynum has a real chance to become BETTER than Dwight - he's already every bit as good a scorer.

Oh yeah, Jim has really screwed up the Lakers. Drafting Bynum sure was horrendous.

I'm with you on being excited by Mike Brown and the defensive-minded staff he's assembling. Mike Malone seems to be another defensive mind. Kuester is another experienced coach. The Italian fellow Messina looks to be great with big-men, judging by the youtube video posted from Canada. Tim Grgurich is yet another defensive wiz. Chuck Person did a great job with the defensive coming out of the all-star break, having a full offseason (if he stays on) would be great.

Wow, the pendulum will really swing now with this staff, as it's looking to be assembled. One extreme to the other. But it's GREAT to *finally* see an emphasis placed on defense! Hallelujah!!!


AS ALWAYS - AND FOREVER - GO LAKERS!!!!!!

hobbit: You're always stressing defense, you must be pleased with this defensive staff being assembled, no?

On Mike Brown letting assistants call plays in crunch time: So what? Riley used to let MAGIC call plays at both ends in crunch time.


On Pau vs. Lamar. They're both great players with solid trade value. I'd hate to lose either. Pau had a bad playoffs. But he has a lot of good years left. I completely disagree with the argument that these playoffs make him somehow unsalvageable as a Laker. Pau right now is the most underrated Laker on the roster.


Having said that, if the Lakers do choose to move one of them, it may be Pau. Pau is overall a better player. He can play both PF and C. Trading him would create a huge need for a backup C, especially with Bynum's knees. BUT. If the Lakers make a move it would presumably be to get younger, quicker and more athletic. LO would be a better fit for a team like that. As a starting PF, along with Kobe and mythcial young quick guard, they could be the core of a team that could run opportunistically and get some easy scores.


To really get quick, Artest would have to go too. He was hired to match up the Celtics. The Lakers got big and strong and beat Orlando and Boston. And they had a guy who could get physical with Pierce, Anthony and James. Now they only have James to deal with, realistically, in the playoffs. And Ron may not be quick enough to stay with him any more. Artest no longer fits the Lakers needs.

On Mike Brown letting assistants call plays in crunch time: So what? Riley used to let MAGIC call plays at both ends in crunch time.


On Pau vs. Lamar. They're both great players with solid trade value. I'd hate to lose either. Pau had a bad playoffs. But he has a lot of good years left. I completely disagree with the argument that these playoffs make him somehow unsalvageable as a Laker. Pau right now is the most underrated Laker on the roster.


Having said that, if the Lakers do choose to move one of them, it may be Pau. Pau is overall a better player. He can play both PF and C. Trading him would create a huge need for a backup C, especially with Bynum's knees. BUT. If the Lakers make a move it would presumably be to get younger, quicker and more athletic. LO would be a better fit for a team like that. As a starting PF, along with Kobe and mythcial young quick guard, they could be the core of a team that could run opportunistically and get some easy scores.


To really get quick, Artest would have to go too. He was hired to match up the Celtics. The Lakers got big and strong and beat Orlando and Boston. And they had a guy who could get physical with Pierce, Anthony and James. Now they only have James to deal with, realistically, in the playoffs. And Ron may not be quick enough to stay with him any more. Artest no longer fits the Lakers needs.

CCX,

re: hobbit: You're always stressing defense, you must be pleased with this defensive staff being assembled, no?

Posted by: CyberCosmiX | May 28, 2011 at 02:25 PM

1. I know nothing about coaches, but I like the defensive theme that's being
sent.

2. A much bigger question is if the players will actually buy into it. I sure
hope they do.

And just so we're clear, I would love for Bynum to buy into defense and
be the DPOY.

I.P. - Dude you are too COLD calling out the blog27, I agree to disagree. First the Show will not trade Pau or Drew, LO yes. It's imperative the team sign a PG, no doubt. I believe trading Blake and Ron and throw in Luke would help, getting cp3 or D Wills not going to happen. Felton may be the best you can get, JR a nice sign will the ml. And by some means get Ariza back and sign dj bmenga.

Hobbit Jim is not disrespecting Bean but simply instilling discipline in the mamba. Kobe is the worse violator of team defense. He always play free safety. By the way folks malone will be calling the offensive plays. Listen with the lakers talent and even me as the coach thats good for 42 games. Calling timeouts to stop the other team's momentum thats good for another 8 games. Getting off the bench and getting angry thats 5 victories. Playing better team defense thats another 5. Hobbit obviously you don't know much about basketball but you are an expert in mma. Who you like tonight? i like rampage to win.


@TOM DANIELS .... Excellent points as always. I found it interesting that you honed in a point that I picked up from Psycorp, which is one way to speed up the Lakers lineup would be to move Lamar into the starting lineup and trade Pau for a fast quick point guard. You also noted that Ron’s lack of speed has now made him less valuable as a defensive stopper against LeBron. All very valid points.
...
Since the NBA has now taken over the Hornets, a top priority is to stabilize the roster so that a new owner can be found to take over the team from the NBA. With Chris Paul having an option to become an unrestricted free agent after this coming season, the NBA will be looking to get Chris to sign an extension or looking to trade him for a player or player with comparable value and long term contract.
...
That makes a Pau Gasol/Chris Blake trade for Chris Paul/Trevor Ariza a very possible move that could benefit both teams. The Lakers would move Chris into Fish’s slot as starting point guard, Lamar into Pau’s slot as starting power forward, and possibly Trevor into Ron’s slot as starting small forward. That would give the Lakers a starting lineup of Kobe, CP3, Ariza, Odom, and Bynum. Then use the MLE to sign an outside shooter like JR Smith and a backup center like the Hornets Aaron Gray.
.........................................
TOM


re: Hobbit Jim is not disrespecting Bean but simply instilling discipline in the mamba. Kobe is the worse violator of team defense. He always play free safety.

Is it possible to be 1st team all nba on offense and defense and not have
discipline? No.

Is it possible to win two championship in a row w/o discipline? No.

You're bustin' Kobe's chops for playing free safety when:

1. People are complaining about the slowness of D-Fish.
2. Bynum recovering from a knee surgery looked a zombie for half the
2/3rds of the season he actually played.
3. Pau played like a chump.

You may know the names of certain spots on the floor, but your understanding
of team dynamics and spatial awareness sucks.

LakerTom,

re: That makes a Pau Gasol/Chris Blake trade for Chris Paul/Trevor Ariza a very possible move that could benefit both teams. The Lakers would move Chris into Fish’s slot as starting point guard, Lamar into Pau’s slot as starting power forward, and possibly Trevor into Ron’s slot as starting small forward. That would give the Lakers a starting lineup of Kobe, CP3, Ariza, Odom, and Bynum. Then use the MLE to sign an outside shooter like JR Smith and a backup center like the Hornets Aaron Gray.

Why would NO make that trade? Why would the NBA, which owns NO,
make that trade?

Wouldn't be nice IF Dwight Howard and CP3 are both incessant to be traded ONLY to the L.A. Lakers.....

Pau Gasol, Brown, Fisher, Luke, Blake should all be traded for Dwight Howard or CP3

In order for the L.A. Lakers to contain the Big 3 in MIAMI, the Lakers need Bynum, Dwight, CP3, and the aging KOBE with at least 2 sharp shooters.


@HOBBITMAGE... New Orleans would make a trade because as long as the Chris Paul situation is unresolved, they will not be able to sell the team and they not want to abandon New Orleans by moving the franchise to sell it. So they either need to trade CP3 for an elite player who has a stable contract or risk losing him with no return at all just like the Cavaliers ended up doing with LeBron.
...
The Hornets also have Jarrett Jack, who had a superb playoffs against the Lakers as their backup point guard and a lineup of Jarrett Jack, Marco Bellinelli, David West, Pau Gasol, and Emeka Okafor could be just as potent as their current lineup. For sure, assuming they resign West, they would have stabilized the personnel situation by replacing Paul with Gasol and putting them in position to sell.
.........................................
TOM

@Cyber – Look at it this way. If Drew nets the Lakers Howard then it a big feather in Jim Buss’s cap since he gets most of the credit for drafting and hanging on to him.

I like Drew’s game a lot (you know that right), but Dwight is a top 5 player…and like Drew he’s still improving. I was very impressed with how hard Howard worked on improving his offense over the summer. Remember he worked out with Olajuwon for awhile. His offensive game was much better this year and now I think he is better than Drew offensively.
------------
@LT – You wrote about trading LO for Felton, but then in the next paragraph you had LO starting with Felton on the Lakers. Did you mean trading Pau for Felton? Hopefully not. The Lakers certainly can get more than that for Pau.
------------
@Michael H – I agree with Laker Tom. Just say no to Biedrins.
------------
@Island – Mike Malone was defensive coordinator under Brown in Cleveland and Kuester was the offensive coordinator. Malone also handled defensive duties in New Orleans…so no he isn’t an offensive guru.


@LROB ... Yes, I would reluctantly trade LO for Felton, whom I think would be great for the Lakers. I don’t believe I have talked about any deal involving Pau for Felton. On the other hand, what about Raymond Felton ($7.5M), JR Smith ($6.0M), and Aaron Afflalo ($2.9M) for Pau Gasol ($18.7M). The Nuggets would have to re-sign JR Smith but the deal would give the Lakers the point guard and perimeter defender and 3-point shooter off the bench that they need AND they would then be able to use their MLE to sign backup help in the front court like Carl Landry and Aaron Gray of the Hornets.
.........................................
TOM

I still contend there was friction about what we may not know until Phil publishes his next book but the team definitely did one of the biggest 180 degree reverses I have ever seen.
Posted by: LakerTom
=======

LT,

I totally agree with this. Something(s) happened and I suspect it came out loud and clear in the exit interviews.

While I have an opinion, I can't place blame because I have no way to know, but the teams chemistry fell apart before the playoffs started and whatever was going on certainly affected the teams play. There is no way a team like the Lakers goes from so good to so bad without there being underlying issues.

I suspect there were multiple issues with multiple players and PJ just wanted to go home. I'd love to hear the inside story.


As for your comments on how well Jarrat Jack played against the Lakers in the playoffs, I wouldn't place any importance on that at all. Remember Blakes triple double against the Lakers before they signed him? Blake looked like an all star PG, as do many PG's when they played the Lakers.

All the trade talk is interesting but we should consider whether any of those players actually would like to come to the Lakers. There were some the Lakers tried to get last year who said thanks but no. I suspect there are players in the league who know some things about the Lakers, but now with a new staff that may be irrelevant.

The biggest concern right now is the new CBA. That can have a huge impact so everyone is kinda flying blind. While the Lakers have taken heat for dumping so much staff, I'd bet the Buss's know stuff we don't. The new CBA may cause some
major probs for a team with an extremely high payroll.


@LROB ... Yes, I would reluctantly trade LO for Felton, whom I think would be great for the Lakers. I don’t believe I have talked about any deal involving Pau for Felton. On the other hand, what about Raymond Felton ($7.5M), JR Smith ($6.0M), and Aaron Afflalo ($2.9M) for Pau Gasol ($18.7M). The Nuggets would have to re-sign JR Smith but the deal would give the Lakers the point guard and perimeter defender and 3-point shooter off the bench that they need AND they would then be able to use their MLE to sign backup help in the front court like Carl Landry and Aaron Gray of the Hornets.

Posted by: LakerTom | May 28, 2011 at 04:03 PM
--------------------

That's an interesting trade proposition. I still don't think I could pull the trigger on it. The Lakers need to at least get an all-star in return for Pau.

Carl Landry is a good player, but I don't like him for the Lakers. He's a good scorer no doubt about it, but he doesn't work hard at the defensive end. Plus, he's undersized for a PF, is a reluctant/poor passer and can't handle or shoot the 3 good enough for a SF. A classic tweener.

Sad to hear the news of musical legend Gil Scott-Heron passing. My condolences to his family, friends and fans. Thus, selections today are in tribute to Gil…and his social consciousness.

Johannesberg – (struggle dealing with apartheid) Performance on SNL
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wglq9xFk1Qc

The Bottle – Dealing with the pain of alcoholism
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_b2F-XX0Ol0&feature=related

Alright, I was trying to be nice about this one issue, but enough is enough!

Since I have actually played the pro post and obviously, most, if not all of you have not, here goes.

As a post player, you only receive the ball on the move and when uncovered except for the trailing defender (he is trailing BECAUSE you are on the move) on your back (if you know how to keep him there, unlike Pau). And you better not fumble the entry pass if you are open or don't expect to get another one anytime soon! If some perimeter player throws it into you, there better not be another perimeter defender sitting in your lap or you will certainly 95% of the time get it deflected or stolen outright! An entry pass when you are covered is on the passer, not on some blogger/pundit's mandate about sharing the f--ing ball! Bynum and Pau are slow to get post position, unlike a few other quick post players on other teams, like Howard, for one example. So, their slow post setup means that there is at least one perimeter defender who has collapsed a bit towards deflecting the ball from the Lakers post player. This is the reason there is a "lack of inside-out basketball" you non-post players seem to parrot all the time! YOU CANNOT PLAY INSIDE OUT WITH WEAK, SLOW POSTUP PLAYERS, BECAUSE IT IS A TURNOVER WAITING TO HAPPEN!!!!! That's one reason for this Laker team. There is another below.

Kobe gets the ball in the post because he makes a very strong move to postup on a weak side (mostly) set with the perimeter passer throwing away from the only defender that is involved, who is on Kobe's back, DUE TO KOBE'S EFFORT AND HUSTLE. So, the postup entry pass mostly works with Kobe. Not so much with AB or Pau due to their lack of diligence in setting a strong position, AND NO OUTSIDE SHOOTING THREATS TO KEEP THE SHOOTER'S MAN FROM SITTING IN THEIR LAP!!!! (Reason #2.)

I am sick to death of 'hearing' the crap and innuendos about the reason for no inside-out game is due to Kobe (and other perimter players) hogging the ball or some such garbage. If that were true, then why is Kobe able to post up anytime he wants except when they run a double team at him at postup!? hhhmmmmm? It is because he actually can do a strong postup in a weak side set and the only time our actual bigs can they get the ball in a position they rarely trigger a post move or paint shot.

SO, to summarize again. The reason the perimeter players are reluctant to start an inside out game with AB and/or Pau is they don't want to turn the ball over when it is obviously going to happen at a high percentage. (Several of you call it ballhogging instead of the actual term, which is: NOT WANTING THAT INEVITABLE TURNOVER!) Pau's weak hands also are a turnover waiting to happen. PRO players are not complete idiots, so they figure why the heck should I throw an entry pass to a weak and/or covered postup, when I can pass it around the perimeter or even jack up a shot that may have some chance of going in where the pathetic postup entry is almost guaranteed to be a turnover. This is not rocket science - even those of you who only have played rec ball recognize a teammate who is not open is not going to get your valuable ball possession. Basketball is not some socialist experiment in 'sharing'!!! Sharing is great in basketball when there is a realistic expectation of success (points on the board).

I too cringed a lot this past season when Kobe or RA or LO or DF or Shannon forced some drive or shot when unnecessary (god knows my wife heard her share of swearing at those mentioned during last season), but, as a rule, the terrible mismanagement of our bigs was NOT mostly on the perimeter players! And, BTW, I am always confused when I hear about the supposed Lakers huge size advantage!?!? Many teams have more 7' bigs, and quicker/faster bigs, and bigs with more hops than AB/PAU/LO so WTF are they blind or just stupid!? The Lakers really have very little to no advantage in the bigs we have due to size, hops, speed over much of anybody significant in the NBA.


@ART .... The new CBA is definitely the 10 ton beast in the NBA’s living room. I seriously doubt if the players union would ever agree to a deal that required a hard cap and writing down of existing contracts. Thus, I expect the new deal to not be dramatically different from the old deal. Just a reworking of the numbers and perhaps a concession by the players limiting future contract lengths to prevent owners from getting stuck with bad contracts. If there is a hard cap, I am sure it would also be accompanied by exceptions and amnesty for existing contracts. Bottom line, you can’t let the situation cause you to put all your plans on hold, which is a point Mitch Kupchak stressed.
...
As for what happened to cause the Lakers to transform from a 17-1 juggernaut to a 4-6 playoff team that was badly embarrassed by the Dallas Mavericks in the 2nd round, I suspect it was the major factor in the team deciding not to hire Brian Shaw because it was obvious that this group of players had clearly tuned out their coaches and stopped running their offensive and defensive systems. Whether the rumors about Kobe and Pau were true or not, whether Drew was complaining about a lack of trust on the offensive end as well as the defensive end, these are problems the front office needed to address and I think the fact and way they hired Mike Brown was the start of doing that.
.........................................
TOM

Checking it out...

Thanks for Tip #6 "Troll Man."

"I am sick to death of 'hearing' the crap and innuendos about the reason for no inside-out game is due to Kobe (and other perimter players) hogging the ball or some such garbage. If that were true, then why is Kobe able to post up anytime he wants except when they run a double team at him at postup!?" --NuggetsCountry

I'm not sure what in your background gives you special insight into the motivations of Kobe Bryant or Shannon Brown (the two biggest offenders when it comes to NOT pounding the ball inside, but your explanation that this is motivated by a desire not to incur a turnover is unlikely at best, and laughable at worst.

Pau (in spite of his well-deserved reputation as being soft) and Andrew are two of the better low post offensive players in the league, and if the likes of Shannon Brown think that the Lakers' offensive advantage lies more with HIM jacking up low percentage long-range jumpers early in the shot clock, he should be removed from the game and released by the team, because that is just plain stupid. There is a far greater likelihood of a missed (long) jumpshot and a defensive rebound (resulting in the same loss of possession that would happen after a turnover) than there is one of the Laker bigs turning the ball over in the low post.

As for the reason that Kobe is able to get the ball in the low post where Pau and Andrew don't (as often), you left out the most obvious explanation of all: he's KOBE BRYANT and his teammates all defer to him. Until that stops happening (or, at least, until it starts happening less frequently) the Laker offense will continue to underperform.

NuggetsCountry,

Nice insight, thanks for the info.

=========

LT-I think the fact and way they hired Mike Brown was the start of doing that.

- Me too.

Leo Goose,

Interesting counter point.

Blog has some decent reading today...

@NuggetsCountry
Amen Brother! Your last post was exactly what many of the bloggers needed to hear.

@LakerTom
I think your trade involving Pau for Felton, J.R., and Affalo is very doable, but I do think that we need to get back either CP3 or DWill if we are going to give up Pau. Yes, the big Spaniard had a terrible post season(one of the worst ever by a Laker Big), but he still is considered one of the best big men in the League. If we trade him, we need a real game changer at the helm of the Lake Show.

I also beleive we must involve Artest in any big trade that goes down. He can't shoot, and is way too slow to guard any of the premier players.

I do love this proposal:
Pau Gasol/Steve Blake for Chris Paul/Trevor Ariza
I have sorely missed Trevor since he left and is much quicker than Artest. He isn't a knockdown long range bomber, but we could use our MLE to aquire that.

Regarding the Mike Brown hiring. I am going to give the guy a chance before I tear him down. I thought he did a great job with getting his Cavs teams to win 60 games. LeBron didn't have much talent around him and basically carried 80% of their offesive load. I do love his statements regarding the team as a family and that he will stress cohesiveness.

Jim Buss is a complete idiot if he refuses to trade Howard for Bynum:
1. Howard is extremely durable- Bynum is not.
2. Howard is always in the running for DPOY and Bynum has only recently decided to play defense.
3. Howard's offensive game greatly improved last year and is still improving. He also knows how to fight for a spot down low. Drew has been much more passive in this crucial point.
4. Howard wants to play with Kobe. Drew recent comments suggest otherwise.

I won't pass complete judgement on Jim Buss until we see what our roster will look like come next season.

As for those who still enjoy bashing Kobe: He may have his personality quirks, but he is still in the running for GREATEST EVER and is not done! He still has a few more rings to win, and hundreds of haters to silence!

Leo Goose,

you wrote:
I'm not sure what in your background gives you special insight into the motivations of Kobe Bryant or Shannon Brown (the two biggest offenders when it comes to NOT pounding the ball inside, but your explanation that this is motivated by a desire not to incur a turnover is unlikely at best, and laughable at worst.

Pau (in spite of his well-deserved reputation as being soft) and Andrew are two of the better low post offensive players in the league,

my response: When you say that they're two of the better low post offensive
players in the league, you mean according to stats don't you?

You talked about "motivations" for Kobe & Shannon. Follow me on this.
The Lakers won 2 championships back to back & were there 3 years in a row.
If we are to believe Kobe, winning is the most important thing. Therefore,
why would he change the behavior that has won him two championships?

Kobe searching for glory does not match up to less shots taken, less time
taken, less points scored & less wins accumulated.

So, what position did you play? NuggetsCountry's explanation matches
what I see on the court and what is reasonable motivation for players.
i.e. If you that a pass would lead to a turnover, would you still make the pass?


@NUGGETSCOUNTRY … We will have to agree to disagree with respect to Kobe not passing the ball inside. I’m not saying there were not times when Drew or Pau did not get good enough position to warrant Kobe passing the ball because of the risk of turnover or that there were not times when our outside shooting was so poor that defenses were collapsing around Drew and Pau but there were also too many times when Kobe just preferred to keep the ball rather than to pass it to a wide-open big. If you can honestly say you didn’t see that then I would be surprised. Kobe may end up being the greatest player ever but he is still human and subject to getting off track. I think he realizes that and will adjust accordingly. I even think he will come back with a vengeance next year, maybe MVP level, but not for scoring but for leading the team as a facilitator, closer, and defensive Doberman.

You also ignore a subject that you and I talked about at length, which was the timing of hitting the post player when they break clear, just like a QB hitting his receiver in stride. The Lakers as a team do a dismal job of that because that is usually the skill set of a true point guard, which the Lakers have foregone because of the Triangle Offense. More often than not, the Lakers entry passes into the post were late or off target. That is the major reason why passes into the post kept turning into turnovers, not the bigs’ inability to get open. Well, except when the passes went to Pau once he started choking . One of the silver linings of a new coach is the hope that we get a new point guard who knows how to feed the post and the shooters to keep defenses honest and spaced. Everything is a matter of degrees.
……………………………………………….
TOM

LakerTom,

re: timing. I have the game from 5/2 & the game from 5/6. Can you
point to a specific time when the pass arrived late?

re: the Lakers and a true pg. So ... if D-Fish can't get the ball into the post
then all of that other stuff about D-Fish's intangibles is just so much crap
and in fact you were lying about what he brings to the team. i.e. His
knowledge of the game. The charging fouls he draws.. blah. blah. blah.
You're going to offset all of that with he can't make passes into the post?
After winning two championships in a row, with him as the starting pg?

hmmm ... Did Kobe & D-Fish have a problem feeding Shaq in the post?

re: new shooters & a new pg. where are you going to get them from?

LakerTom: "You also ignore a subject that you and I talked about at length, which was the timing of hitting the post player when they break clear, just like a QB hitting his receiver in stride. The Lakers as a team do a dismal job of that because that is usually the skill set of a true point guard, which the Lakers have foregone because of the Triangle Offense. More often than not, the Lakers entry passes into the post were late or off target."
-
Totally agree, nailed it. Our perimeter guys were never in sync with our bigs, nor did they routinely hold up possession in order to give them touches.

A lot of it had to do with Phil not stressing they play inside-out.

I'm sure you and others here remember the late-showtime days, when off a miss (or a make!) Magic or Byron or Coop would grab it and sprint upcourt. Many times the defense got back and set, and Kareem - who would be staying back - would come jogging into the frame and set up into position to get a pass. I still remember those days as if it were yesterday. Kareem would arrive a good 6-8 seconds after the rest of the guys, but invariably when he got a touch it was good as gold.

That's why I don't buy hobbits contention that speed of our bigs cost us, or that we can't play with a couple slower bigs.

How many 7-footers are in the league that are quick? There aren't exactly many 7-foot gazelles in the league. Never have been that I can remember.

Even during the 'feed the big-dog' (Shaq) days you would routinely see Van Exel/Fish/Kobe/Eddie - whomever - hold the ball and wait for Shaq to establish position. Shaq lumber down, bull his way into the lane, dislodge some poor defenders, turn around and hold up his big paws for a pass.

We simply didn't do that this year, nor really have we done a good job in general since Shaq left.

I hope Mike Brown reasserts an inside-out concept. It will keep our bigs happy, collapse the defense, open up the perimeter. It's a win-win.

A point guard is crucial to control offensive tempo, but all the guys should be looking to make those interior passes *at the right time*. If we gotta hold up a few seconds, so be it. We did it during showtime. Did it during Shaq/Kobe days - and should do it now.

We are not maximizing our bigs by not doing so, and defenses have been locking down our shooters as a result.

Let Mike Brown be the one to re-establish the inside-out game that was missing under Phil!


AS ALWAYS - AND FOREVER - GO LAKERS!!!!!!

Too many ______ on this blog who don't carefully read my posts, then accuse me of something missing that I did not! I explained several points YOU ignored in my post, for which you take credit for when I stated them quite clearly and have for years on here!

I played & coached; did you!? I am an expert at post play!

I talked about moving to arrive at the pass in my posts over the years!

I also clearly stated in many posts this year, including the one above that my cringe and frustration did not exclude Kobe! BUT his culpability was minimal compared to his contributions! PERIOD! And his ratio of good to bad is way higher than anybody else on the team, even in your hater-dreams (or should I say Pau-lover, AB-lover)!

GEEZ!

Sorry if the truth offends you Andrew-alias-blogger-tag. Just prove it on the court and off-season - that is all we ask because you do not have a long term proven track record yet (an 18 game stretch is not enough). Most players after 6 years in the NBA have that record or are gone, which is why some who actually do not ignore history and trends of life choose to take note and keep a skeptical eye open.


PS. The best post activity we have had involved Pau and AB passing it over the top to each other, if anybody has forgotten...........remember? And post players have historically gotten their points off rebounding and putbacks. Remember Wilt when he came to the Lake Show..............? I do, up close and personal!

@LakerTom: "You also ignore a subject that you and I talked about at length, which was the timing of hitting the post player when they break clear, just like a QB hitting his receiver in stride."

You are better than this! RE:

"As a post player, you only receive the ball on the move and when uncovered ....

I too cringed a lot this past season when Kobe or RA or LO or DF or Shannon forced some drive or shot when unnecessary (god knows my wife heard her share of swearing at those mentioned during last season), but, as a rule, the terrible mismanagement of our bigs was NOT mostly on the perimeter players!

Posted by: NuggetsCountry | May 28, 2011 at 04:25 PM
"

Read my posts carefully please!


BTW, being that I was a post player my natural tendency is to root for them, but I also watch them the closest in a game, which is why my intricate critiques. Obviously I would kill for the talents of any of our bigs including Caracter, I just know they could do better with their enormous talents and am frustrated they CHOOSE to not do so. Pau, LO, and AB included.

"Posted by: hobbitmage | May 28, 2011 at 02:20 PM "

Good post!

"Posted by: LakerTom | May 28, 2011 at 02:56 PM "

Like it!


@MCLINE … I was reading a post by 888 in another blog where he said he heard an interview with Jim Buss where Jim said that it is not true that he would not consider a Drew for Dwight trade. Who knows what the actual decision would be because there are financial and fit factors and other trade parameters that make all the speculation meaningless. Bottom line, I don’t think they would make the trade if it were offered. By the same token, it will be up to Drew to stay healthy and play like he did during the 17-1 run. If he does anything less than that, the Lakers should probably make the trade.

@HOBBITMAGE … If you watch either of those game tapes I am sure you will see many times when a big man got open but did not get a pass or got a pass too late or too much of a lob or too hard or just poor by any number of standards. Some of the time it’s just fate that the ball handler is occupied by the defender or not in a position to make the pass but far too often the ball handler either prefers to keep the ball, which is what happens in Kobe’s case, or just not a good enough passer in the case of other players to make the pass at the right time due to a lack of anticipation of the what will happen. Passing into the past has become just as much a lost art as playing with your back to the basket.

And please don’t take my comments about the team needing a point guard to somehow repudiate everything I’ve said about Derek Fisher. There is no conflict in respecting the great contributions Derek has made to five championships and recognizing that age, ability, and a move away from the Triangle says that now is the time to replace him with a true point guard. As for the shooters and a new point guard, I think you have to trade Pau or Lamar and I’ve put forth several suggestions.
……………………………………………….
@CCX … Thanks for your response. It’s not a surprise that players today do not know how to pass the ball into the post since there are so few true post players in today’s league. Your point about Messina perhaps being a great addition because of his success developing post games in the past makes sense. Whether it’s Kobe not wanting to give up the ball or other players not knowing how to pass the ball or inside players not knowing how to get open and seal their man, it’s a problem we need to fix to take full advantage of our superior size and length. I hope Mike Brown will focus right on that.
……………………………………………….
TOM


@LakerTom: It is true that it seems Basketball 101 seems not required for most of the players in the NBA, so they don't really know how to do the basics.

NuggetsCountry: I respect you for having played the game at a higher level than probably all other bloggers here. Also respect that you have coached, totally respect that. No one here is an expert, that is for sure.

I'm not arguing the points you make because I agree that Kobe wasn't to blame for not passing frequently enough into our bigs, but there is no way anyone can convince me that this season we properly played inside-out ball. We wouldn't hold possession on the perimeter and let our bigs post up and get proper passes. Especially Drew, because Pau was inexplicably not getting good post positions to be fed passes.

Our bigs aren't the fastest, however neither was Kareem (especially those last 3 years or so) nor was Shaq. I don't buy it's their slowness, I just don't.

Time and again Drew would set up in the paint, turn around and the ball was either being passed around the perimeter or in a place where a clean pass simply wasn't able to be made. There was no sync, no coordination.

Obviously, they guys weren't dictated to give the bigs their touches. It was a problem this year, moreso than I can ever recall a Laker team having.

So I don't agree that the bigs weren't getting passes due to not establishing good, solid, rooted low-post positions. Especially Drew, who was getting to his spots (Pau did have a high number of times he got into mystifyingly-poor position, locking himself into position outside the paint or just away from his normal spots. I guess he was getting manhandled and whatnot.)

There wasn't a concerted effort to get them touches, there just wasn't. No sync. Bad offensive possessions which usually would end in bad perimeter jumpers or forced efforts.

The guys would wait for Kareem to set up, we'd wait for Shaq - but I guess Phil didn't feel Drew merited waiting for.

As for Pau feeding Drew, that is true - but the poor positions Pau would get to minimized those passes - compounding things. How often was he forced to pass-out because he wasn't even able to get clear shots?

Time for Phil to ride off to Montana if you ask me, I for one am looking forward to a coach actually doing some coaching...


AS ALWAYS - AND FOREVER - GO LAKERS!!!!!!

@CyberCosmiX: Agree mostly.

I too am hoping for better things. I think it was 2-3 days ago I said that the best news is that PJ was gone so we could get to some accountability on our team and fresh coaching perspectives.

I too think that outside shooting help from someone (via trade/FA) other than a double/triple teamed Kobe will be necessary to get open postups moving or not. I am certain Kobe will welcome that too, as I am sure he is as tired of anybody not getting enough help out of the rest of the team. Kobe knows he cannot get more rings by himself anymore. Open post, open midrange, open 3s - all are what keep defenders honest.

So, a lot of us are on the same rooting team, just have different ideas on where to improve. None of us is on the court anymore, so the best we can do is imagine and critique. We all imagine different trades, but several bloggers are correct when they state that the FO has very little room to maneuver and no cap room at all (which will get worse next CBA). So, I like doing generic wish lists for certain types of players, but it is hard to imagine other GMs giving us help towards a ring without some miracle happening to get CP3/DWill/Howard/etc. types. Someone on here posted that Jim Buss stated he not completely unwilling to talk trades even for AB, so maybe I will get to retract some of my unkind words later. I hope so (his attitude, not trading AB specifically since there are few AB trades that make sense for Lakers except Howard)!

Mark Medina: Question topic:

I would like to hear your best guesses/reporting/insider instincts on a per (2011 roster) player basis on what role they may (or may not if the Lakers are planning to let them go) play in next season. Like what is happening with each player as far as you know or may have inside instinct or reporting to speculate.

NuggetsCountry: The salary cap situation is something I really hadn't even thought about, that's a great point. If it does go down under the new CBA, or if they institute a variation of a hard-cap, the Lakers might be in a bad spot until the core group's contracts end - which is at least two more seasons.

Maybe I'm just paranoid, but I always get the impression that other GM's don't like to trade with the Lakers. Like the fraternity of GM's, whenever they get gather to scout or get together at a function or whatnot, they criticize those other GM's that have directly or indirectly helped the Lakers get to where they are. Especially after the Pau deal, seems like other teams are reluctant to make deals with us (if Mitch is even exploring making deals, lol).

The local team in your part of the country showed us just how valuable Drew could be by pursuing what would have basically been a straight-up 'Melo-for-Drew trade - which supposedly Jimmy was the one who rejected it. If the Lakers wanted to make a move for Howard with Drew I could live with it because Dwight is one of the most resilient players in the league. If Jimmy eventually pulls the trigger on it I'm sure it would ease the minds of a lot of people who think we're in worse hands than Donald Sterling.

I hope too that we'll finally see some plays run to free up Kobe. He works so hard for his points, he's also been our best passer and our only penetrating guard. Usually he's the one who sets up the offense, or has to wave Pau or whomever to set him a pick. I know Kobe's gung-ho on the triangle offense, always talking it up, but I suspect that once he starts to see how a coach can run plays, free him up, allow him to not work as hard possession after possession then he'll be loving Mike Brown, who did a fine job of doing that with LeBron. Kobe has never really had that luxury under the triangle which they've played under for much of his prime years.


AS ALWAYS - AND FOREVER - GO LAKERS!!!!!!

Has anyone read the Simers article on the interview with Jim Buss. This clears up a lot of misconceptions.

Here's a couple of quick excerpts.
------------------
"Looking back on it, we should have contacted Kobe," Buss says. "Kobe said it was management's job to pick a coach. He just said, 'Defense first.' That's what we were doing, but we should have reached out to him."
------------------
There have been reports that Buss interviewed only one candidate, Brown.

"No truth to that whatsoever," he says. "My father, Mitch and I interviewed three candidates: Brian Shaw, Rick Adelman and Mike. All fantastic coaches. When the three of us talked later we all came back to Brown."
------------------

Anthony/Bynum: "Denver never offered Carmelo. We never had a decision to make. We were offered two other players for Andrew, but as a group we had no interest."
------------------

So much for all those that thought it was okay not to give Kobe a heads up before announcing the new coach.

I feel a little better about Jim Buss after reading the article. Carry on!

@MM - I think Plaschke was the columnist that erroneously reported the Lakers only interviewed one candidate....and you kind of ran with it in your critique of the process....not good!


Hornets' Mike Malone on Lakers' job: “I’m kind of weighing all my options. We’ll see what happens, but its definitely a possibility.''

Found a couple of articles regarding prospective assistant coach, Michael Malone who is now the main assistant coach of Monty Williams with the Hornets.

This article is from April, 2009, when Malone was Mike Browns assistant:

http://www.nba.com/cavaliers/features/malone_defensive_090429.html

After they sent the Pistons packing, and with their second round opponent embroiled in what’s now become a best of three series, the Cavaliers can only beat up on each other for the next few days.

At the outset of the postseason, Mike Brown was honored as the NBA’s Coach of the Year; validation that he’s forged his defensive identity on the team – and that it translated into a league-best 66 wins. And Brown’s club put that defense on display in the first round – snuffing Detroit in four convincing wins.

The Pistons didn’t shoot over 40 percent in any game after the first and shot just .409 for the series. They didn’t crack the 80-point plateau in the final two games and only put up 68 in Game 3. In the final game of the series, Detroit’s big three combined to go just 3-for-24.

You can trace this to Coach Brown’s defensive tenets – disseminated daily by Brown’s “defensive coordinator,” Mike Malone.

After spending four seasons with the Knicks, Malone – son of former Cavalier assistant coach Brendan Malone – has brought his own defensive mentality to the Wine and Gold. And this week, the Loyola grad will be putting together the game plan(s) for either the Hawks or the Heat – whoever survives the series that’s deadlocked at two games apiece.

“We have to be ready for both,” said Malone, “The luxury is having so much time to prepare – watching all their games, watching our regular season games (against each) and looking at what we did well against them, what we didn’t do well, and how we have to make adjustments so we don’t get hit with the same things in the playoffs.”

The Cavaliers went 3-1 against both clubs and Malone knows each will bring their own unique difficulties.

Miami was able to crack the century mark against Cleveland twice, no small feat considering that it happened just 19 times all season. The Heat shot .463 against the Wine and Gold, .459 from long distance. Dwyane Wade averaged 29.0 ppg over the four contests – stinging them for 41 in a thrilling Cavalier victory on March 2 in Miami.

“Miami, they want to play halfcourt basketball and execute with Dwyane Wade and Jermaine O’Neal,” said Malone in his trademark New York accent. “One thing they do a great job with is they’re one of the better teams in the league in terms of steals per game and blocks per game. They have size at the rim, they get in the lanes and create turnovers and they score off those turnovers. So, they will score in transition off your mistakes, but they’re not looking to – off rebounds and makes – get it in and get it up the floor to try to score real quick. They’re more looking to pound and control the ball.”

The Hawks averaged 94 points per contest against Cleveland, shooting .441 from the floor and .385 from beyond the arc. The Cavaliers beat Atlanta by 14 in late November, but the biggest margin of victory for either team in the final three meetings was six points.

“For Atlanta, if you can keep them out of transition and make them play the halfcourt and be able to guard the ball – because they have a lot of one-on-one players, iso type players – you have to be able to shrink the floor and keep them out of the paint, and you should be alright.”

Malone then quickly added: “Easier said than done, obviously.”

Mike Malone joined the Cavaliers in September 2005 and is also an assistant coach with the Canadian Men’s Senior National Team. He and the rest of the Cavs staff have truly given the Wine and Gold a defensive identity. The numbers are irrefutable.

This year, the Cavaliers ranked No. 1 in overall points allowed and the only club to hold opponents to less than 92.0 ppg. They ranked second in defensive field goal percentage (.431) and tops in defending the three-pointer (.333). Cleveland held opponents under 40 percent a league-best 22 times and were 22-0 in those contests.

Cleveland kept foes under 90 points 36 times – going 35-1 in those games – and held them to 80 points 13 times – going 13-0.

“The thing that really helped was we had the luxury of a Training Camp and really reminded guys – going through step-by-step – what our foundation is, what our staples are,” asserted Malone. “And obviously it’s easy for me – Mike’s a defensive coach – we’ve been a defensive team since I got here. And a Mike Brown team is always going to be a defensive team. I’m just lucky in that I believe in the same things he does and the fact that we’re defending so well.”

Malone will be doing the Cavaliers’ playoff preparation, and he’s obviously been pleased with what he’s seen so far.

“Every year that we’ve been here, in the playoffs, we had great game plan discipline, we focused on the gameplan going in, we’ve taken away guys – defended them the way we needed to defend them – and we’ve gone out there and executed,” added Malone. “And, obviously, in the first round, the proof was in the pudding.”

Of course, having a defensive philosophy and having the horses to execute it are two different things. This season, the Cavaliers have had both.

“In the past, we’ve had some good system defenders,” said Malone. “We didn’t have many good one-on-one defenders. Eric Snow was pretty good. Ira Newble was pretty good. But now you have Delonte, who’s very good. And you have LeBron, who’s getting better and better. (You can put him on any guy any time you want.) Anderson’s done a great job. And Ben, when he’s healthy, can really do some good stuff.”

It’s easy to tell Delonte West is one of Malone’s favorites. But he has been for a long time. As an assistant with Manhattan College, he tried to recruit the Cavaliers current starting two-guard.

“Delonte is one of those guys who takes the challenge every night,” praised the Cavaliers assistant. “The guys that LeBron will finish the game on, that’s usually the guy Delonte will guard through the first three quarters. When I recruited him out of high school, that’s what I loved about him. He’s a competitive guy, and loves that challenge that ‘I’m gonna shut you down tonight.’ He doesn’t care if he gets the ball, he’s in Rip’s ear, talking (stuff) to him. If you score on Delonte, you’re going to have to work for it. It’s not going to come easy.”

Nothing has come easy for opponents this year. And both the Heat and Hawks know that’ll be the case for either when their first round series wraps up. While it does, Mike Malone and the Cavaliers coaching staff will be honing their troops for battle.

“We tell our guys: We have a way we want you to defend, but we know that there’s going to be breakdowns at times. It’s going to happen. But when it does, you’re just going to have to cover for each other and trust each other. And, right now, they’re doing a great job with that.”

Actually this isn't an article, more like a blurb from when he got hired last year by the Hornets:

Malone joins the Hornets after a five-year stint with the Cleveland Cavaliers. As a member of the Cavaliers coaching staff, Malone has been instrumental in the team’s success since his arrival. The Cavs made their fifth-straight playoff appearance in 2010—just the second time in franchise history the team has done so. Over the last five campaigns, Cleveland has gone 272-138 (.663), which is third-best in the NBA during that span. In addition to his coaching duties with the Cavaliers, Malone was an assistant coach with the Canadian Men’s Senior National Team. He helped guide the Canadian team to a top four finish in the 2009 FIBA Americas Championship in Puerto Rico. Malone has also spent time with the New York Knicks, as well as coaching at Manhattan College, UVA, Providence College and Oakland (Mich.) University. Malone played college basketball at Loyola College (Md.). He is the son of former Cavaliers’ Head Coach and current Orlando Magic Assistant Coach Brendan Malone, who is a 23-year veteran of the NBA.

My take on the whole feeding the post topic. I lean more on the side of Nuggets explanation. BUT I will say this...I believe in the triangle the guards or wing players are encouraged to initially swing the ball from one side to the other, (to get the defense to move) and then the post player should cut to the other side where the ball is...or get the ball as they're on the move from one side to the other. I did see Drew open many times on the same side of the ball. But the guard/wing would swing it to the other side and then Drew didn't effectively move with the ball. Again it happened enough where I believe it had to be part of the offensive concept...that it was preferred to swing the ball before entering it directly into the post. (Maybe MM can ask someone that question).

To generalize I would say Drew did a decent job of posting up. Pau did a poor job. And LO looked like he preferred not to in most instances (I think LO good 3pt shooting this season hurt his "post up" mentality).

Kobe, Fish, LO and Blake are all very good post feeders. Ron is average. Barnes is below average and Shannon is terrible.

Interesting that the Lakers were never offered 'Melo for Bynum, although the media was all over that and insinuating Jim was the veto on that one. Two other players for Bynum? Might have been a couple of the pieces they picked up from the boatload they got from the Knicks - good thing they passed since no two pieces they got would have added up as equal value for Drew.

I look at Jim saying that not contacting Kobe was a mistake and that they should have done it in hindsight, it's too early to have made that admission, too soon. Maybe sometime down the road, but not so soon.

They are probably reading the tea leaves and interpreting Kobe's lack of comment on the hiring to mean that he's 1) not a Mike Brown fan (being a pretty astute NBA mind in his own right), or 2) pissed the Lakers didn't even give him a courtesy call to get his input on the move.

- - -

LRob: Remember near the start of the season how Plaschke was also wrong on how the whole Bynum-surgery/World Cup went down? It really tainted how people looked at Drew and is something that people are still quoting to this day on the blog. Plaschke has been trying to out-Simer TJ lately...

Good breakdown of the feed the post issue. The guys really got sloppy running the triangle (something I suspect would never had happened if Tex was still with the team!) and as time and again it would break down, they would seemingly be frozen into poor floor positioning due to the spacing it required, and repeatedly would we see Kobe forced into freelance mode. Working it around the perimeter allowed the defense to come out and our bigs to get fronted more than I can ever remember. When things started to unravel, it really got ugly for a few games there.

Totally agree with your assessment of the bigs and the passers into the post. Let's add Luke as a very good post feeder, he gets dumped on so much around here he deserves a little mention too. Poor Luke, lol...


AS ALWAYS - AND FOREVER - GO LAKERS!!!!!!

@LRob2: "...I believe in the triangle the guards or wing players are encouraged to initially swing the ball from one side to the other, (to get the defense to move) and then the post player should cut to the other side where the ball is...or get the ball as they're on the move from one side to the other. "

Exactly! Well said. That is how postups are supposed to work best - on the move to a defensive shift coming a split second later. AND, also true that when the ball does not change sides quickly (no matter what initials the perimeter players have), it defeats that aspect. I will say one thing that the triangle had was a predictability that had many defenders shooting the passing lanes or overplaying the passing lanes thus defeating switching the ball side-to-side. One reason I am glad to see it ride out the door with PJ! Hell at 60-something I could still probably steal a few due to knowing the passing lanes on the perimeter after seeing the triangle for so many years!

The offense definitely stagnated over the years, the players seemed like zombies running it this last year.

What I notice that Shaq did that Drew and the current bigs doesn't do as often is is the following. Lakers on offense, with the ball, in a perimeter players hand near one of the sidelines, looking to pass in to a big. Drew or one of the bigs establishes low-post position and looks for a pass. For whatever reason (defense pressure, expiring 3-second clock) the player holding the ball can't feed the post, so instead they work it back out and across to the other side.

During the Shaq era when that would happen he would many times cross through the paint and exit on the opposite side, allowing the Lakers to try to feed him from the other side of the court. It seemed to be more effective when they did that, it would make the defense shuffle and scramble. Shaq also gave the off the impression of determination to get a pass, and would regularly get rewarded.

Now I don't know if this is something the coaching staff hasn't stressed or what, but it happens a lot less with Drew (and far less with Pau). What I mean is that Drew exits the paint or low-block position to the same side, which becomes the weak side when a ball-handler moves the side of attack. Then with defensive pressure, or time constraints too often than not is our big on the opposite side of the action.

One other thing, why didn't Phil ever stress pick-and-rolls? Kobe is wonderful at them. We also rarely used cuts, outside of the Killer-B's (Barnes, Blake and Luke too). I thought that those were two options of the triangle? I'm not an X's and O's guy by a longshot, but was Kobe not practicing a big reason why a lot of the lack of cohesiveness we saw? I tend to think that Kobe should have more regularly practiced - not for his benefit but for everyone elses.

The offense just stagnated like it wasn't properly tended to. More and more do I think Tex Winter was the genius behind Phil, who was definitely a master at managing ego's and motivation, but a little like the Grand Wizard of Oz, just an ordinary guy pulling levers and whatnot as far as his coaching prowess.


AS ALWAYS - AND FOREVER - GO LAKERS!!!!!!

Did anyone out there see the TJ Simers interview of Jim Buss? Jim came off as bumble, respectful of his father, and under control. Shame on anyone who jumped to the conclusion that Jim is a runaway train. Shame on the la times writers who make it sound that the buss family is destroying the lakers. Heisler has no inside information and plaschke is a bafoon as always - 10 championships in 30 years Heisler and Plashke - scoreboard baby!

For those who want to trade Pau - please get tested for althzeimers because you obviously don't remember the team before him. Again. Scoreboard.

Heat in 6 this year
Lakers - heat in finals in a 50 game season next year.

Nuggets it seem like you are suffering from the same fantasy as hobbit. Hobbit is a blackbelt and trains in a dojo. You are a former professional basketball player. Really? Really? Really. Obviously you know jack about basketball. Even kobe said in the postgame interview during the mavs playoffs is that the bench must get the ball into the postplayers. Remember that? i will take a known commodity like kobe one of the best players whoever played on this one over a suspect no named former pro post player or a guy who watched too many bruce lee movies. I watched where Bynum had his guy pinned in the block and kobe or one of the wing players hoisted up a bad shot. It is not hard to get the ball into the post when you have an explosive player like kobe on the wing. Bynum is faster than yao, kareem, etc and they got their touches. Hobbit you see the Priest is right again, Rampage won. Hahahaha.

I can't wait for the finals epic series aptly titled "THE KING STRIKES BACK"!! If Dirk NoWINski had his hands full with just DWade in 2006 imagine when they get a load of LBJ. I can't wait for The King to crown Dirk with his royal sceptre similar to how he crowned the royal jester Rose. I read that when the heat win there will be another 1 hour television special hosted by Jim gray. LBJ in full royal regalia will walk on the red carpet while "Pomp and Circumstances" plays in the arena. He will then sit on his throne and Dirk will bow and place the ring on the King's finger. The final part of the special will show mavs fans burning noWINski or NoRINGski jersey in the streets of downtown Fort worth.

"but was Kobe not practicing a big reason why a lot of the lack of cohesiveness we saw? I tend to think that Kobe should have more regularly practiced - not for his benefit but for everyone elses.

Posted by: CyberCosmiX | May 28, 2011 at 10:40 PM

"

Agreed! This is something I think was crucial and hopefully they get fixed going forward. Kobe MUST practice with the team to some extent the whole season! At least sets and motions, at full speed.

Interesting that TJ Simmers got the interview with Jerry Buss.
An interesting interview too, it was good for Jim to come out and talk and put some of the rumors and speculation to rest.
It's not his fault he is Sr. Buss's son and imagine having to follow in his dads footsteps.
It would be nice if he allowed himself to be interviewed more often so people could get to know him a little better.

In the Jim Buss interview he said, "The top seven or eight players will probably be the top seven or eight again next year. "

That's somewhat discouraging. Sounds like no plans to move Ron, upgrade at PG or acquire some outside shooting unless they just try to upgrade the end of the bench.

CyberCosmix,

you wrote: During the Shaq era when that would happen he would many times cross through the paint and exit on the opposite side, allowing the Lakers to try to feed him from the other side of the court. It seemed to be more effective when they did that, it would make the defense shuffle and scramble. Shaq also gave the off the impression of determination to get a pass, and would regularly get rewarded.

Now I don't know if this is something the coaching staff hasn't stressed or what, but it happens a lot less with Drew (and far less with Pau). What I mean is that Drew exits the paint or low-block position to the same side, which becomes the weak side when a ball-handler moves the side of attack. Then with defensive pressure, or time constraints too ofthen than not is our big on the opposite side of the action.

my response: I'll buy this. This is far more detailed then my "lack of hustle".

you wrote: One other thing, why didn't Phil ever stress pick-and-rolls? Kobe is wonderful at them. We also rarely used cuts, outside of the Killer-B's (Barnes, Blake and Luke too). I thought that those were two options of the triangle? I'm not an X's and O's guy by a longshot, but was Kobe not practicing a big reason why a lot of the lack of cohesiveness we saw? I tend to think that Kobe should have more regularly practiced - not for his benefit but for everyone elses.

my response: Athleticism. We lost our "freak of nature" in Ariza for a pillar
of strength in Artest. It fed into the: The post season is a slower/half-court
game mantra.

re: Kobe not practicing. Per Phil & Kobe, they were trying to maximize his
knee by counting upon the character/high bball IQ of Pau etc. Obviously,
experience is not all it's touted to be.

this was written:

Even kobe said in the postgame interview during the mavs playoffs is that the bench must get the ball into the postplayers. Remember that? i will take a known commodity like kobe one of the best players whoever played on this one over a suspect no named former pro post player or a guy who watched too many bruce lee movies. I watched where Bynum had his guy pinned in the block and kobe or one of the wing players hoisted up a bad shot. It is not hard to get the ball into the post when you have an explosive player like kobe on the wing. Bynum is faster than yao, kareem, etc and they got their touches.

my response: During the entire series, the Lakers "AS AN ORGANIZATION"
talked about getting the ball into the post. So ... if the bench doesn't do it and
you have Blake [ veteran ], Barnes [ veteran ] , LO [ Veteran ] & Brown
failing to get the ball into the post ... that would mean that either the big wasn't
ready to receive the pass or they all suck! Given LO just won 6th man of the
year, I'm going to go out on a limb and say that LO does *NOT* suck.

Which would put it back on the Bigs. Which would make sense because Pau
was playing like a chump & Bynum is under-experienced given his multiple
injuries, no college experience and choosing not to keep under the tutueledge
[sp ? ] of Kareem.

this was also written: Bynum is faster than yao, kareem, etc and they got their touches

my response: Yao is 7'6". He is literally *always* the tallest man on the
floor. He also played for a team *KNOWN* for it's hustle. Which led to
Landry, @ 6'8" out rebounding Bynum at 7'1". Kareem is the most skilled
C who ever played the game and had 6'9" pg named Magic. Kareem's
understanding of what he needed to do to affect the game is not in the same
universe as Bynum's. Maybe you shouldn't compare players across eras if
you don't understand the underlying principles of the movement and space.

LakerTom,

you wrote: And please don’t take my comments about the team needing a point guard to somehow repudiate everything I’ve said about Derek Fisher. There is no conflict in respecting the great contributions Derek has made to five championships and recognizing that age, ability, and a move away from the Triangle says that now is the time to replace him with a true point guard.

my response: It seems odd to me that given D-Fish's age and all of the
wonderful things you said about him, you can then turn around and say that
he doesn't have this basic skill which would have been prevalent when he
started playing.

To CCX & NuggetsCountry,

re: Kobe not practicing. That would/should not affect the bench play &
cohesiveness. They had every opportunity to practice with LO, Pau, Artest,
Bynum, D-Fish & Brown. That's a whole lot of skill to hide behind: Kobe
didn't practice w/ us. That's a whole lot of championships, BBall IQ &
experience to hide behind we missed our leader.

Can we call a spade a spade? Beginning of this *PAST* season, a number of
articles were written about the Lakers being complacent. They started the
off season being complacent. They started the season being complacent. They
finished the season being complacent. They got swept being complacent.
After all that garbage last year, about Kobe's taking too many shots. Kobe
doesn't pass the ball. It's insulting to fans that actually listen/read the
interviews. Kobe gave everything he had including giving himself
arthritis. His teammates made music, went to the world cup, did cameos
on CSI, started a clothing/fragrance line and participated in a reality-TV
show.

Until the teammates show the same commitment as the leader, and start
racking up the same sort of accolades these excuse you make don't hold
water.

They're being paid more per year than some of us will ever earn in a lifetime
for a GAME! No excuses given to these complacent bozos. I care less about
losing and more about how we lost.

Can we stop laying any cupability at Kobe's feet? Not because his practice
wouldn't have helped, but because of the other factors which are a
much greater reason for *HOW* we lost.

 
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