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Matt Barnes exercises option to stay with the Lakers

Citing frustration over the Lakers' four-game loss to the Dallas Mavericks in the Western Conference semifinals -- and his own limited effectiveness following right-knee surgery -- Lakers forward Matt Barnes said Tuesday he will exercise his $1.91-million option to return to the Lakers.

"I'll be a Laker next year," Barnes said after new coach Mike Brown's introductory news conference. "I want to win. It's a great opportunity."

That's a small dose of good news in an otherwise uncertain offseason. Brown's 40-minute news conference contained indications of that uncertainty as he fielded plenty of questions on whether he's suited to bring the Lakers to another championship.

Barnes being the only player in attendance at the news conference raises questions about whether the team truly supports Brown's arrival, though Barnes and team officials insisted that most players are on vacation. With the Lakers not announcing the news conference until Memorial Day, altering those plans might have been difficult, they said.

Another uncertainty is Barnes himself, who continues to rehab his surgically repaired knee.

"It doesn't hurt no more," he said, though he added that swelling remains and that he's a month away from being able to run and jump.

Barnes' offseason has hardly been relaxing, even if he has spent the last 2 1/2 weeks on vacation. He said he's refused to watch the NBA playoffs because of the Lakers' early playoff elimination, and that he still constantly thinks about suffering a lateral meniscus tear on Jan. 7, an injury that sidelined him for 29 games.

Anytime he walks out the door of his Palos Verdes home, he said, his 2-year-old twin sons Carter Kelly and Isaiah Michael believe he's off to practice or a game. He hasn't exactly lied to them, he said, he just never bothered telling them otherwise because the frustration lingers -- and is the reason he wants to come back to the Lakers. 

"The bitter taste in my mouth from here on out drove me to not want to go anywhere else," he said, acknowledging that having some stability after playing with eight different teams in his nine-year NBA career also influenced his decision. "I want to come back to right the ship."

-- Mark Medina

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

 
Comments () | Archives (16)

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I'm glad Barnes is back. He's reasonably quick & defensive.

Watching Dallas vs. Miami right now.

A good game. Nice to watch players hustle and who aren't
injured.

I'm glad he's staying. He was pretty effective prior to the injury, so I expect to see that again.

Miami and Dallas look pretty evenly matched, and neither team is playing great. Ah well. First game of a series is always tenuous. Except for last year's game one. That pretty much rocked.

As always,

GO LAKERS!!!!

Hobbit

Low blow man on the 'injured' play!

Both teams shooting a dismal percentage. Miami doing a pretty good job getting the quick double on Dirk. Close game, but the PSP feel like Dallas can take one here, today or thursday.

Thanks
PSP Officer

PSP,

I think Dallas can take one too. However, watching Miami play ... I'm
reminded of when the Lakers had a chance at Bosh and how I was for
the trade which would get him.

Do you see how athletic Miami is looking? So quick. Everybody running.
Everybody hustling.

test

I don't see Dallas coming back in this one. They're going to lose on their home floor. Miami has the talent and weapons to back up the desire. Nowitzki cannot beat the Heat. YIKES! We're all "witnesses." Out with the “old” and in with the “new.”

Dude...1 down and 3 to GO, c'mon HATERS. Appreciate the King, sitting on the couch with your LEMON face. Just full of hate, with your jaws all TIGHT. Relax dude....it's gonna be ALRIGHT.
And the New NBA.....just sayin

Mike Brown - "I was in San Antonio for three years, part of a championship team in 2003, and we had two big, skilled seven footers in Tim Duncan and David Robinson. We'll do something similar to what they did ..."

LOVE it.

Makes sense. [ http://bit.ly/jPoCpy ]

Glad he said it.

Lol. Mark Whicker (OCRegister) on Brown's presser [ http://bit.ly/iqyKpa ]:

---

For instance, Brown enumerated his three tenets of offense and defense, just to satisfy those who thought he had none of one and six of another.

It is difficult to postulate that James disdained Brown, because that means he must have signed with Miami to fulfill his boyhood dreams of playing for Erik Spoelstra."

There is no indication Brown and Bryant won't get along other than Bryant's inexplicable failure to hire a skywriter to decorate the sky with "I Like Mike."

---

Andy Kamenetzky on the lack of Laker players in attendance [ http://es.pn/iez7U6 ]

---

"Don't read negatively into the small forward providing the lone presence among players. For starters, a lot of guys are out of town and as much as Matt was there to a show of support for Brown, he also happened to be in the neighborhood after a rehab session. "

---


The presser was only announced late yesterday (Monday) afternoon/early evening [tweeted here by Mike Bresnahan http://bit.ly/mK4Q1d ] -- hardly much time for players to rearrange MDW schedules even if they wanted to (attend).

Meanwhile, Kobe already informed ESPNLosAngeles.com’s Dave McMenamin that he has great respect for Brown and is on board with the hiring, despite not being consulted about the choice. [http://es.pn/ley0lN ]

"Second, one off the reasons for their success is that both Hank Steinbrenner and Jed York went through lengthy internships before being thrust into the #1 positions in their organizations ..." Posted by: LakerTom | May 31, 2011 at 06:46 PM

---

There's no factual basis to use "Jed York" and "success" in the same sentence unless it's "lack thereof" -- yet. I follow the 9ers. There's far too much Fredo and not enough Michael in the would-be Jedi evidence his chronic, disastrous affinity for "Alex Smith" and coliseum applause (e.g., hiring Singletary based on fan reaction to a meaningless season-ending win in another losing season followed, eventually & predictably, by more of the same).

===

"I loved the comment by Jim that what he loved most about his job was that he got to talk basketball every day with his best friend." Posted by: LakerTom | May 31, 2011 at 06:46 PM


---

Absolutely luved that comment too because it was real, spoken from the heart.

I had doubts about Jim, largely because I knew almost-nothing about him.

However, there was *nothing* about the process of Brown's hire to justify those doubts.

In fact, quite the opposite.

Vincent Bonsignore (Daily News) reporting how Dr. Buss apparently shares certain perceptions [ http://bit.ly/iplwhi & http://bit.ly/iiWemH ] regarding the price of success [ http://bit.ly/kRYhPn ]:


---

Looking back, Buss wonders if climbing the NBA mountain for a third consecutive season and advancing to a fourth Final in a row was just too daunting.

"I think what I didn't take into account was how difficult it is to go to the Finals four times in a row," Buss said. "We won it twice, but we'd been in the Finals a year before that. That means we played something like a hundred more games than other people.

"That took a toll."

---

NEW ERA Folks ......LBJ ' King' all-time Great, Heat will win next 7 NBA Larry o Brien Trophys .Laker dynasty over.Kobe '#1 player' capitulates crown to labron.Kobe drops out of top 5 (aging)

Yep, LBJ will finish the season with 2 trophys: Finals MVP & The O'Brien. Like it or not, we're all "Witnesses" now!

Darn it: "Trophies."

WOOT MR Barnes is back!

so far so good, finally we get good news from somewhere!


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