Posts Tagged ‘Lakers’

After the Los Angeles Lakers got eliminated from this season’s NBA playoffs by the Oklahoma City Thunder many fans, and media, were calling for Coach Mike Brown’s head. That’s nothing new, they have wanted him to be fired all season.

But I’m here to tell you that he deserves another chance. You can’t just get rid of him. Yet.

And here’s why:

1. He’s the new guy. Mike Brown came in with a whole new system this season. Jim Buss made sure that all traces of The Triangle offense were gone. Brown had to bring in a whole mew system and the players weren’t too receptive. They even tried a mutiny and tried to bring The Triangle back. When the Mike Brown System was given a chance it worked. Every time the Lakers went inside to Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum first, good things happened.

2. The Lockout. Mike Brown didn’t have a chance to introduce his system properly because of the lockout. He had to teach it to the players on the fly. Its like trying to change the tires on a NASCAR car while it’s still running on the track. With a proper training camp Brown will be able to teach his system the right way.

3. David Stern. If the trade of Gasol and Lamar Odom for Chris Paul and others had gone through the Lakers would be in he Western Conference Finals instead of being home. That non-trade sent the whole Lakers season into chaos. Just think about what might have been.

4. The Players. The Laker players never really bought in to Mike Brown’s system. Kobe Bryant was very cool to Brown early in the season. Andrew Bynum acted like a petulant little child most of the season and Gasol moped through the playoffs. Brown is going to have to win the players over if he wants to succeed. I think he can do it.

5. Kobe Bryant. I know this is a touchy subject because everybody flies off the handle whenever I criticize Kobe but he set the tone for the whole season when he refused to call Brown after he was hired. Kobe is the leader of this team and the other players will follow him. If Kobe makes nice with Brown, so will everyone else.

So there you have it, Mike Brown deserves another chance for all the above reasons. If the Lakers don’t win a title next year, then you can fire him.

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Los Angeles Lakers vs. Oklahoma City Thunder

This is a hard one for me. As a die hard Lakers fan it’s tough for me to pick against them but I might have to do it this time.

The OKC Thunder are a good team. Really good. If they can play their game they have a great chance of winning this series.

Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook are going to get their points and lead the team. Serge Ibaka is going to be a beast on the defensive end and James Harden will lead the bench and be an all around great player.

A lot has to go right for the Lakers to win this series. Maybe too much.

The bench has to play better. Pau Gasol has to remember that he is seven feet tall and play like it. Andrew Bynum needs to shut up and be ready to play. Metta World Peace needs to play with CONTROLED aggression. And Kobe Bryant has to give up the ball more.

That’s a lot of things that have to go right for the Lakers. That’s why I am picking the Thunder to win in 7 games.

San Antonio Spurs vs. Los Angeles Clippers

The Clippers have been a great story this year. Chris Paul has totally turned that team around and made them a legitimate threat in the playoffs. Unfortunately, they are about to run into a buzz saw named the San Antonio Spurs.

The Spurs are like a steam roller, they’re slow, boring to watch and they absolutely crush everything in their path.

The Clippers will not get the flopping calls against the Spurs like they got against the Grizzlies.

The Spurs may be the best team in the league and I fully expect them to be in the Finals. I have the Spurs winning in 5 games.

It’s finally my favorite time of the year, the NBA playoffs. I’m an NBA guy and the Finals are more exciting to me than the Super Bowl.  So let’s get right to it.

San Antonio Spurs vs. Utah Jazz

The Spurs come into the playoffs as the number one seed. They had that last year and were bounced out in the first round by the Memphis Grizzlies. I don’t think that’s going to happen this year. The Jazz are young and athletic but I think the Spurs are on a mission this year. The Spurs are old but they still have the heart of a champion. I have the Spurs in five games.

Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Dallas Mavericks

This is a repeat of last years’ Western Conference Finals but this time I think OKC wins. And pretty easily. Dallas has been gutted and they are the sorriest champions that have ever taken the floor. I would not be surprised if this one only goes four games.  But I’m going to give Dallas the benefit of the doubt and say OKC wins in five games.

Los Angeles Lakers vs. Denver Nuggets

The Lakers are going to be without Metta World Peace for all of this series unless it goes seven games. And there is a chance it could go seven games. The Nuggets are a tough team and they always show up for games against the Lakers. And now they don’t have Carmelo Anthony dragging them down. I don’t think the Nuggets can deal with Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum. And the Lakers have this guy named Kobe Bryant who has a bit of a chip on his shoulder. I’m going with the Lakers in six games.

Los Angeles Clippers vs. Memphis Grizzlies

The Clippers got a lot of attention early in the season and many talking heads picked them to represent the West in the Finals. Now we all know those people were a bunch of idiots. Memphis has flown below the radar this season but they are a serious contender. I’m taking the Girzz in six games.

Two years ago Lamar Odom was razing the Larry O’Brien Trophy and celebrating his second consecutive NBA Championship. Last Year he was voted Sixth Man of the Year. This year he’s out of a job.

When the Dallas Mavericks sent him packing a few days ago everyone was talking about what a waste of talent Lamar has become.

I think that’s incredibly unfair to Odom. In my opinion, he is still a great talent. He is the most versatile player in the league. Name me one other player that can play all five positions. I’ll wait.

When you look at everything that Lamar has gone through off the court you may have a different view of him. It’s amazing that he has made it this far. His mother passed away when he was a child. His father was a junkie. He’s had to bury a child. He’s lost many family members in the last few years. Just recently his father, who he had somewhat reconciled with, was very ill. He has dealt with issues that would have buried many of his critics.

I honestly think that getting traded from the Lakers broke his heart. And I’m talking about the trade to New Orleans that NBA commissioner David Stern vetoed. Even though he’s been on different teams during his career, I think Lamar finally felt at home with the Lakers. All of his needs were met on that team. Losing them was like losing his family all over again.

Lamar Odom is an emotional person. He always has been and will always be. And that’s fine. Most people don’t understand that type of personality, but I do.  I truly believe that if he somehow returns to the Lakers he will be the great player that he always has been.

He was recently seen leaving Dallas wearing his Lakers championship t-shirt and a lot has been made of that. Maybe he was sending a message or maybe he just felt most comfortable in Lakers gear.

Some team will give Odom a chance to vindicate himself next season, you can bet on that. The only question that remains is, will it be a team that Lamar will feel comfortable playing for?

I have been watching the Dwight Howard Saga all season. As a Sports Blogger it was an interesting story. As a Lakers Fan I wanted to see if he was coming to LA. That was, of course, until Andrew Bynum started playing like the best center in the league. I became an objective observer at that point.

I watched Howard go from city to city and say how much he would like to play there. After a while it seemed like there WASN’T a city he didn’t want to play for (that is, except for Orlando).

He delivered to Magic management, a list of teams that he wanted to be traded to. And that list kept growing. After a while, it got to be tedious. Then it became embarrassing.

Everything came to a head yesterday when Howard said he was going to stay in Orlando through the end of the season and wanted the Magic to “roll the dice.”

It’s no secret what Dwight Howard is doing. He’s doing exactly what LeBron James did when he left Cleveland. Only Dwight is doing it in public. LeBron let the Cavaliers believe they had a chance to keep him so they wouldn’t trade him. That way, when he was a free agent he could go to a team that wasn’t completely gutted. Think about what Miami would have to have traded to get LeBron.

It’s no secret that Dwight wants to go to the soon to be Brooklyn Nets. The Nets would have to give up Brook Lopez and a few other players to get Howard. But if Dwight waits until July 1, when he is a free agent he can simply sign on the dotted line and call the movers. Of course the magic would be without a superstar and would have nothing in return. Just like the Cavs ended up.

And the Magic can’t really trade him either. He has stated that he would not sign an extension with a team to which he was traded. Who in their right mind would rent Howard for half a season, trade away big parts of their team, only to watch him walk out the door on July 1? I don’t see any team willing to take that risk.

So, in effect, Dwight Howard has destroyed the Orlando Magic for the foreseeable future.

I know it’s only been two games but the Lakers are 0-2 and I say it’s time to push the Panic Button. Call it over reaction. Call it pessimism. Call it whatever you want. Just push that sucker.

It’s time.

After another last minutes collapse against the Sacramento Kings last night I tweeted that it is time to push the panic button and was immediately inundated with responses that I was crazy to even suggest such a thing. All I can say is something has to be done and pushing the Panic Button is as good a solution as any other I have heard.

I understand that Andrew Bynum is out but after watching the uninspired play of the Lakers and Kobe’s frustration level go off the charts, I’m not sure Bynum would have made a difference.

Think about this for a second, the Lakers had the game won against the Chicago Bulls on Christmas Day and fell apart in the last minute and gave the game away. The game against the Kings was one they should have won and were coming back only to fall apart in the last two minutes of the game. Two last minute collapses in two games is not confidence inspiring.

And watching Kobe get more and more frustrated isn’t helping, either. We all know that when he gets to the point where he doesn’t trust his teammates he gets into that mode where he tries to do it all by himself. And that is not good for the Lakers.

I understand Kobe’s frustration because I am frustrated, too. The Lakers did not get better in the offseason. They did not get Chris Paul or Dwight Howard like everyone thought they would. In fact, they may have gotten worse purely based on the fact that they traded away Lamar Odom for essentially nothing.

So I say let’s push the Panic Button and make some major changes.

As if the Lakers haven’t had enough drama this season with all the failed trade attempts and losing Lamar Odom to the Dallas Mavericks it seems that things just got worse.

TMZ is reporting that Vanessa Bryant has filed for divorce.

Sources connected with the couple tell TMZ … Vanessa — who stuck by Kobe after he was charged with sexually assaulting a Colorado woman in 2003 — decided to end the marriage because she believes Kobe has been unfaithful … again.

As one source puts it, “She’s been dealing with these incidents for a long time and has been a faithful wife, but she’s finally had enough,” adding, “This one is the straw that broke the camel’s back.”

This might explain why Kobe has been in such a bad mood lately.

One of the most shocking revelations is that Kobe and Vanessa didn’t have a prenup!

There is no telling how this will affect the Lakers season but it can’t be good. This going to get ugly before it gets better.