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Lakers Q&A: Joe Bryant comments on the Mike Brown hiring, believes Kobe Bryant will last 3-5 more seasons


Lakers guard Kobe Bryant has maintained his silence about Mike Brown becoming the team's head coach. So I figured I'd stop by Sparks practice Friday afternoon to visit Kobe's father, Joe, who's serving as the team's assistant coach under Jennifer Gillom, for some possible answers. Below is the transcript on that subject and a few other Lakers-related topics.

What do you think of the Brown hire?

That's a good question. I don't know. It could be Mo, Larry or Curly [of the Three Stooges]. If anybody stepped into L.A., it's going to be difficult. It's going to be difficult. Brown won 60-plus games in the East with Cleveland. I wish him a lot of success. It's going to be important that the people around him give him good advice. Those things are important too.

Do you have a sense of what Kobe thinks about it and why he hasn't commented on it?

We don't talk about basketball. Everybody is waiting for that. Everybody is wondering why Kobe isn't saying nothing. I'm not giving you any inside stuff. Good try. Good try.

How do you think he will handle it?

Kobe is a professional. Whatever is going to happen is going to happen. There's no need to make a comment on any of that stuff now. There might be a lockout.

The rest of Kobe's career obviously centers on how he will try to find a way to play through the mileage and injuries. What's your assessment on how he's been doing that?

You can't put it on age. All players have injuries, even young players have injuries. You learn to deal with pain and you learn how to understand your body. You also understand your game. When you're a student of the game, a lot of players rely on their athleticism. Once you get older and their athleticism is not there, then you don't know how to play. But Kobe knows how to play and understands the ABC's of the game. He understands the scouting report and how players are going to play and he understands his teammates. When you understand the game, it goes back to playing chess. You know how to move the pieces and you know how to move the ball.

You're not going to run as fast. You're not going to jump as high. You have to pick your moments. The great example when he picked his moment was the playoff game when he went down the middle and dunked, the one he had against [New Orleans center Emeka Okafor] in Game 5 of the first-round series. That was checkmate. He's a warrior and understands the game. All players have injuries. It's part of it and how he can manage it. He's been doing a good job with that. Nobody is going to run and jump [like] when they were 18 or 19. It's impossible for people to think that. As long as he's enjoying the game and keeps the two seven-footers [Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum], I still think he has three, four or five more years to play at a high level.

Three to five more years?

The issue is going to be when the media talks, he can't get 30 [points] anymore, but he's averaging 25 [points] and five [assists]. The expectations they'll put on him or say he can't do anymore, that's going to be the biggest challenge, dealing with it. The important thing is as long as he's enjoying the game and enjoying the challenge and still in the race to vie for a championship. That's motivation enough. If you're with a team that has no shot at making the playoffs, then mentally you're going to be down and the energy level isn't going to be up or your'e going to want to be traded. As long as he's enjoying the game and it's a challenge for him, I think he'll continue to play.

So you said one of the keys will entail Kobe having Bynum and Gasol. How does that dynamic need to work to be most effective?

Last year's playoffs against Boston, everybody was talking about Pau and how he needs to be tougher. One day I saw Pau before a game or at practice and I said, "Pau don't listen to all that. Just play tall. All of this stuff about being bruising is not your style and be more physical. That's not your style. Play tall." He looked at me and said, "Thanks." It's simple. That's why I can help a team. Sometimes assistant coaches get to hollering and screaming and sometimes I can say those things that make sense. The common sense things. That's the hard thing about being an assistant coach because you have to be on the same page with the head coach. I'm a little different. When I told Pau to play tall, it was like a bell went off.

So what ailed the Lakers last season?

They didn't have a three-point shooter If you don't make an open shot, the defense will set. That's the problem. If you can get someone who can shoot, then the floor opens up. Then Pau Gasol and Bynum and Kobe can penetrate because they're not double teamed. It's simple.

Every year that Michael Jordan played, he always had a shooter. Steve Kerr, John Paxson, B.J. Armstrong. Name all the shooters Kobe had in his career. When crack reporters are analyzing the game, that's the first thing they should look at. What helped Michael out was he would penetrate, get double teamed and then stick it out to Steve Kerr. Kobe never had that, but he's still been successful.

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Photo: Lakers All-Star guard and NBA Finals MVP Kobe Bryant takes in the Angels-Dodgers game on Sunday with his father, Joe Bryant, who is a former NBA player. Credit: Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times / June 21, 2009

Comments () | Archives (123)

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@LTLF and/or LT: Nevermind about JCrawford, he's still under contract thru next season and the Wizards are definitely not gonna give him up(at least I don't think they will(LOL)....he's got WAY too much upside to let him go for anyone other than a legitimate All-Star, he's that good!

Here's a link to an article on him describing his play after the trade.


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

>>>@LTLF … You didn’t respond to my proposed LeBron James trade straight
>>> up for Dwight Howard, who signs an extension with the Heat.

I didn't respond because I proposed and discussed it about 2 weeks ago.

In my opinion, it makes Miami MUCH more balanced, and thus improves their chances of getting a ring sooner.

OTOH, It would be a giant douche move for DWade/Riles to lure LeBron to Miami under the pretense that he's part of the core of a superteam and then turn around and use him as a glorified trade chip.

As I said before, I would love nothing more than the irony of LeBron dumping on his home town (it's only business), only to have the team he moved to dumping on him (it's only business).

>>>After the first game after Dallas adjusted, Kobe managed just 54 shots over
>>> the last 3 games

And after game 1, the media (and a lot of fans) gave him a lot of crap for shooting too much in game 1. Their argument was the standard "they all start standing around and then when he does pass to them, they're out of sync and miss".

I can't guarantee it, but I'll wager the Lakers coaching staff also suggested that Kobe shoot less and get his teammates involved. If so, bad move by the coaching staff.

michael h,

I actually agree with both of you.

Pau choked... because Dallas focused hard on him on defense.

When a star player is playing at top form, it doesn't matter if he's getting double teamed. Remember Kobe vs Phoenix in 2010? They were double and triple teaming him almost every time down the floor and he was still consistently able to get off his shot and hit a high percentage of them.

Yes, Pau got a little more than the usual attention. And if he'd shot 48% instead of the 60ish % that he shot the last couple of years in the playoffs, then that would be excusable. But 42%?

You want a standard of comparison? Luke Walton shot 42% for the 2009 playoffs. But Luke shot more 3-pointers than Pau, so he had a higher effective field goal percentage.

That's right. Pau's performance in the 2011 playoffs was Luke Waltonesque.

@POINTFORWARD … “why would they trade any of their core when they took the east by storm this year?” LOL. You don’t think that a Big 3 of Howard, Wade, and Bosh is not better than James, Wade, and Bosh? I’d think about that twice if I were you. You’re looking at a much better balanced trio of stars who fit much like the Celtics Big 3 of Garnett, Pierce, and Allen. And if LeBron is the player most GM’s would pick to build a franchise around, the trade makes perfect sense for both teams. It would be a nightmare for the Lakers of course because Miami would be much better
@LTLF… Man, nothing to get testy about. I asked because I value your opinion and I must have missed your post about it among the million trade scenarios. My bad. Anyway, it’s the trade that should be talked about but isn’t. And unlike LeBron, I think Dwight would go there as the #1 player, not #2 as LeBron has become. Who knows what friction may lie below the surface. I said when they put this team together either LeBron is not an alpha dog or they will split before their contracts end. The type of opportunity that a LeBron for Dwight trade offers could be the fuel to fire it up.

LT - Did I come off as testy? It wasn't intended that way. My bad.

I think the Heat came close enough this year that they'll give LeBron at least one more chance before they toss him aside like yesterday's news. If he flamed out in NEXT year's playoffs and if Dwight opted out of Orlando in the summer, then they might considering LeBron for a S&T.

I forgot to mention, as I examined the photo in this post more closely, I could really see the strong resemblance between Kobe and his dad, kinda made me envision what Mamba might look like 20-25 yrs. from now...nice father's day photo MM!

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

Here’s one of my favs featuring the Big Man. Rest in Peace. My prayers and condolences to Clarence’s family, friends and fans.

Fine then, delete the posts

My offer of peace still stands JAMF

Troll Man,

I just deleted your comments and follow-ups by you and LakerTom regarding the JAMF back and forth. I spent 15 minutes backreading all JAMF's comments from the last 2 1/2 months (there were about 35 under the new sign-in protocol) and see nothing that would evoke your recent comments other than JAMF did say you were welcome to come chat with the folks on the RC (and I don't believe her tone was in any way inflammatory).

I have nothing more to add at the moment other than to ask that everyone stays on topic with the Lakers. I understand there will be disagreements, but even those should be civil and not lead to insults of person. State your beliefs, support them with facts and everyone can judge from there.

Best wishes to all the fathers out there. I hope it's been a great day and that you and yours have an enjoyable summer.

Dan Loumena
Assistant Sports Editor

Dan Loumena,

That's because MM deletes anything that might incriminate her. That is fact, and I'm sure there are more than a few bloggers who would corroborate that.

But like I said I'm willing to offer an olive branch and call a truce.

@LT – I’m sure Orlando would take the DHoward/Lebron trade, but as of today Pat Riley is on the record as saying he’s not trading Lebron. Of course, we know that’s subject to change based on the results in 2012, but by then I believe the Magic will have made their decision on Howard.

I don’t like the your proposal of trading Pau for Bass, Reddick and Nelson. The Lakers need to get a top 25 player back in return (minimum)

@LTLF – My answer to your informal poll on what the Lakers should get back for Pau – (1) Dwight Howard (2) Deron Williams and a big.

@latopia – Thanks for posting Robert Horry’s Father’s Day letter to Ashlyn.

@GDUB – I agree about Jordan Crawford (my homie), he's very explosive and I can’t see the Wiz trading him. His upside is an instant offense type player like Jason Terry. Crawford has incredible range and tremendous confidence. His weaknesses are his shot selection and possibly accepting his role. He’s one of those guys who think he should be taking the big shot even if Jerry, MJ or Kobe is on his team. I love that type of mentality, but sometimes it needs to be reeled in a little.

Enjoyed the King Curtis. That's a nice one of have stuck in your I wish they’d release on cd the Sam Cooke tribute album he did. Of course, no argument from me on the Ree-Ree :-)

According to Mitch Lawrence (New York Daily News)…

Don't be surprised if the Lakers shift their sights from Dwight Howard to Chris Paul or Deron Williams. New coach Mike Brown is expected to ditch Phil Jackson's triangle offense and there's some sentiment within the organization to find a star playmaker who can turn the corner.

Dwight on whether Pau is soft or not…also good stuff on the Lakers, the finals, etc…but you’ll have to translate if you can’t read Spanish………..

Do you agree that people say Pau Gasol is soft? Dwight Howard: I don't think he's soft. I've played a lot against him. You can call him soft or whatever, but he has two things than the rest don't have: two championship rings. You can't be soft and an NBA champion. The ones who call him that I'm sure they want to mess with his head, but that's not true. He is a physical player in the paint and very smart. He's not soft at all

I wouldn't know what to do if the Lakers got a quality point guard.
How long has it been anyway?

So I think everyone agrees we need a point guard but I don't like the idea of giving up Pau Gasol for one. Rarely should you trade big for small, so that leaves out Bynum of course.

Which leaves Lamar Odom (who's kinda big too) and Ron Artest as your main tradeable pieces.


Well it looks like we are running a dictatorship here now; you write anything that criticizes certain people and your comment disappears into thin air! Lol

Oh well, its monday and a new week; let's try to start this one on a positive note!

PSP Intern

Dave McMenamin (ESPN/LA) reporting "Toronto Raptors assistant coach Scott Roth, Philadelphia 76ers player development coach Quin Snyder and former University of Utah head coach Jim Boylen are the three finalists for a position on the staff of new Los Angeles Lakers coach Mike Brown, according to sources close to the situation." [ ]

Larry Coon reported that he heard reports that the Lakers offered Gasol to Minnesota for Kevin Love and he #2.

Pau for Varejao, Sessions & #1 pick!

LTLF -Larry Coon reported that he heard reports that the Lakers offered Gasol to Minnesota for Kevin Love and he #2.

That trade would be sort of a surprise, doesn't do anything to improve one of their biggest weaknesses though that being outside shooting or the PG issue.
But then maybe the Lakers could put together a trade for a shooter or PG with that #2 pick plus spare parts, but time is running out...

Troll Man - I stand by Dan Loumena's decision. You seriously need to drop this and stop fighting with everyone.

You wrote "5d. The #2 pick, the #4 pick, Kevin Love, and another player from Minnesota (other than Rubio).

I would go for that as we keep LO as Mr versitle 6th man. Draft Kemba or Brandon whoever left @ 4th and Enis Canter to replace Pau.

If Enis gone #1 then go #2 williams then #4 pg left.

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