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The LA Lakers Thread: 2007-2008

Old 11-04-07, 11:08 PM
  #101  
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Lakers run over Utah in the 4th quarter for the win For this team to beat Phoenix and then Utah, not to mention barely losing to Houston, 3 playoff teams in the Western Conference after all the fucked up stuff that happened in the off-season is awesome.

Not to mention how fun the team has been to watch these 2 games. They're moving the ball around, making plays, and playing hard on both sides of the court. to the Laker young guys. Maybe more wins can solve this whole Kobe thing.
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Old 11-04-07, 11:47 PM
  #102  
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.....and to do it all without Lamar Odom is even more amazing!
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Old 11-05-07, 12:03 AM
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Best team ever.
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Old 11-05-07, 12:16 AM
  #104  
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I was at Staples tonight, good crowd, fun game. Good team ball thus far.
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Old 11-05-07, 01:20 AM
  #105  
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Lest you forget, they started out like this last year. We beat Phoenix our first game (without Kobe) and went on to a 9 - 5 record for the month of Nov. I'm not going to get excited yet.
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Old 11-05-07, 02:46 AM
  #106  
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Originally Posted by devilshalo
Lest you forget, they started out like this last year. We beat Phoenix our first game (without Kobe) and went on to a 9 - 5 record for the month of Nov. I'm not going to get excited yet.
Yeah it's too early in the season. Phoenix started bad last season and went on an amazing run afterwards.
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Old 11-05-07, 03:04 AM
  #107  
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Yeah we started off well and actually played really good for the first few months of the season and then the injuries started to pile up.
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Old 11-05-07, 10:41 AM
  #108  
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Yeah, but considering this team had a more fucked up off-season then anyone else, it's certainly better then expected
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Old 11-06-07, 12:28 PM
  #109  
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interesting article by chad ford on espn.com

When Kobe Bryant went public with his trade request this summer, the "Kobe sweepstakes" began, at least in the media.

What team wouldn't want the man often called the "best player in the league"?

Almost six months later, Bryant is still wearing the purple and gold of the Los Angeles Lakers, while teams such as the Dallas Mavericks and Chicago Bulls have shown an unwillingness to offer what the Lakers would consider fair value.

Why are teams reluctant to make their best offer for Kobe?

I spoke to a number of NBA sources who have been engaged in or are familiar with the Bryant trade negotiations this summer. Almost all evidence from these conversations points to this conclusion:

Bryant's trade value isn't nearly as high as he or the Lakers would like to think.

Here are four questions teams are trying to answer before acquiring Bryant:

1. Does Kobe have too much mileage?
Kobe is already 29 years old. When he turns 30 in August, he'll reach an age at which many players decline. It's the age at which Michael Jordan retired the first time -- and when MJ returned, he was still a great player, but no longer a high flyer.

It's not only the years that concern some teams, but also the minutes. Counting NBA regular-season and playoff games, Bryant has logged 33,576 minutes -- 918 games of about 37 minutes each, in just 11-plus seasons.

That's more "mileage" on his legs than on the legs of Ray Allen (age 32) or Allen Iverson (32). Kobe's contemporaries include Vince Carter (30) and Steve Francis (30), and he's played thousands more minutes than those two.

And about the same as Chris Webber (34). More than Alonzo Mourning (37). More than Sam Cassell (38).

Further, Kobe has had knee problems the past few seasons, including knee arthroscopic surgery in 2004 and 2006.

No one knows whether all that mileage -- all those minutes -- will shorten Bryant's career.

But it's understandable if a team is reluctant to find out how Kobe's knees survive his next 10,000 minutes on the hardwood.

2. Is Kobe really the best player in the NBA?
It's often said, by players, journalists and fans alike, that Bryant is the best player in the league.

Without a doubt, he's one of the greatest offensive forces we've ever seen. Indeed, his skill level in all aspects of the game is probably the most advanced we've seen since Jordan.

But not everyone thinks that makes him the best player in the game.

As teams use more sophisticated statistical measures, Bryant doesn't grade out as the NBA's most productive player. It's not even close.

We can see this as we look at the publicly available metrics, such as player efficiency rating, wins produced and plus/minus.

For instance, Bryant has never led the league in John Hollinger's PER (player efficiency rating), which combines a player's stats and percentages into a single measure. Last season, Bryant was well behind Dirk Nowitzki and Dwyane Wade.

To put his numbers into historical perspective, his career-high PER of 27.97 in 2005-06 ranks No. 42 all-time in the league. Several current players, including Wade (twice), LeBron James, Dirk Nowitzki (twice), Shaquille O'Neal (six times), Tracy McGrady and Kevin Garnett (twice) have posted a higher PER than Kobe did in his best season.

A newer statistic, adjusted plus/minus, "reflects the impact of each player on his team's bottom line (scoring margin), after controlling statistically for the strength of every teammate and every opponent during each minute he's on the court." By this measure, Bryant ranked sixth in the NBA last season, behind players like Jason Kidd and Gilbert Arenas.

According to our best objective measures, Bryant is not the single most efficient or effective player in the game.

Some might say that such measures don't account for Bryant's ability in the "clutch," but even there, Bryant's reputation exceeds his actual performance. In several studies done at 82games.com, Kobe has come up short of other NBA stars. In one such study, an excellent, in-depth report, Bryant ranked 21st in the NBA in clutch performance.

How does Bryant's postseason prowess compare to Nowitzki's? In the playoffs, Dirk has more points per game, more rebounds per game, more blocked shots per game, a higher field-goal percentage, a higher 3-point field-goal percentage and a higher free-throw percentage. In the past three seasons, Nowitzki has led his team to the NBA Finals once, while Bryant hasn't won a single playoff series.

Great player? Yes.

The best? Probably not.

3. Is Kobe a winner?
This question probably resonates the most in NBA front offices. Several GMs I've spoken with have questioned aloud whether Kobe is really a winner.

Let's be fair. He has three rings, and he's known for his intense nightly effort on the court. He was widely acknowledged as a leader of Team USA when it ran the table this summer. And he's led the Lakers to the playoffs the past two seasons despite the team's roster of young, inexperienced players.

On the surface, it appears that Kobe is a winner. But dig deeper and there are real questions.

For starters, the Lakers haven't won a playoff series since Shaq was traded away to Miami. Many, starting with Bryant himself, blame the "supporting cast." But, in fact, Kobe's teammates are better than generally believed, and he has a Hall of Fame coach in Phil Jackson.

It's worth noting that last season when the Lakers won at San Antonio in mid-January, they were 26-13, but their progress was eventually derailed by injuries.

The more central questions, according to some observers in the NBA, revolve around Bryant's approach to the game. His amazing determination, while certainly a key part of his success on the court, does not always translate into leadership or a winning attitude.

The best-selling book "Leadership and Self-Deception" explains that leaders try to develop people who are even more capable and creative than they are. They are constantly in the process of creating future leaders. They are more interested in results than credit.

Certainly Bryant wants to win. But he wants to win his way, according to many who have followed his career. And when you break it down, that translates to this attitude: I would rather lose my way than win your way.

Bryant wants to win, but he also wants the most shots. He wants to be a great hero, not a great teammate or leader. He wants the credit.

This Kobe character trait became most apparent when Shaq was traded to the Heat. While Bryant has denied that he asked the Lakers to trade Shaq, just about everyone in the league believes that Kobe wanted him traded because Kobe was tired of sharing the spotlight.

Bryant's play often resembles a solo act, and his criticism of his teammates along with his trade demands only reinforces the idea that Kobe has his own interests, not the interests of his teammates, foremost in his mind and actions.

Contrast Bryant with LeBron James for a moment. James goes out of his way to involve his teammates, and takes over only when needed, as when he scored 25 consecutive points against Detroit in the playoffs. He invests in his teammates, and they rewarded him with a trip to the NBA Finals.

If LeBron were to suddenly be available in a trade, does anyone believe that after six months the Cavs would still be waiting to receive a serious offer? Or 10 serious offers?

I'm told the biggest reason why teams like the Bulls and Mavericks have been reluctant to offer their best players for Bryant is that they've carefully and successfully put together a cast of team players with a charismatic coach that tries to get everyone pulling in the same direction.

If one of those teams were to break up its core and bring in Bryant, would those parts add up to a championship? No matter how great Kobe is, can a team count on him to devote himself to the greater good?

No one knows, but it's easy to see why Mavs owner Mark Cuban and Bulls GM John Paxson would have reservations.

4. Is Kobe worth it?
Those three issues lead up to the ultimate question: Given all the complex considerations, does it make sense to acquire Kobe?

First of all, it's just not that easy to make a deal, especially during the season, when the roster rules make it more difficult to trade many players for one.

Second, Bryant makes a lot of money -- $19.4 million this season. Since teams over the salary cap are required to make deals that come within 25 percent and $100,000 in contractual obligations of each other, any team that trades for Kobe must part with at least $15 million worth of salaries to make a deal work. The Lakers want several young players to make the trade work. Trading away young, inexpensive talent is disruptive to a team at best and devastating at worst.

Third, such a trade would be a gamble, and NBA teams are generally risk-averse, as we saw at the last trade deadline. Most GMs prefer to stick with the status quo. Taking risks invites scrutiny from the media and fans, and tends to hasten a GM's dismissal, many feel. Doing nothing is simply safer.

Fourth, there is the straightforward question of talent: As great as Bryant is, can he replace the talent a team would have to give up? And if a team gives up too much to acquire Kobe, that team would be no more equipped to compete for a championship than the Lakers are, which would potentially start the cycle all over again, with Bryant's unhappiness dominating the team.

What can make a trade work?

Kobe could drop his no-trade clause (and promise to rescind his 15 percent trade kicker to make a trade work), which would theoretically allow for more teams to consider a deal.

Or the Lakers could drop their asking price, accepting a deal for cap relief and/or veterans that help them compete right away.

Or a team could get off to a slow start (such as Chicago's disappointing 0-3 start) and raise its offer.

But if the status quo holds, teams will have to look forward to the summer of 2009, when Bryant can opt out of his contract at the age of 31.

By then our eyes and hearts will likely have caught up with what the numbers and logic are already telling us: Kobe Bryant is a great player, but in a team sport like basketball he lacks the ability, on his own, to deliver an NBA championship.
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Old 11-06-07, 01:26 PM
  #110  
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The only thing I really disagree about is the idea that PER and statistical analysis discounts Bryant as the best player in the NBA, or one of the best. That, and comparing Kobe to Dirk in the playoffs, especially after Dallas' meltdown last season, is kind of funny.

The other 3 points, while I don't necessarily agree with entirely, are hard to argue against and certainly can be true depending on how you look at things. The mileage is a concern, although I don't think its anything to worry about for another 3 years or so. Kobe's inability to win sans Shaq is apparent and depends on how you much value you put into his teammates. And his worth for the teams interested, like the Bulls, is questionable and definitely a risk chemistry wise.
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Old 11-08-07, 02:04 AM
  #111  
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Again with the Kobe asked for Shaq to be traded crap. Shaq himself admitted it wasn't Kobe it was Buss.
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Old 11-10-07, 12:54 AM
  #112  
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Odom came back tonight and looked ok. Lakers looked ok in the win against crappy Minny. Bynum really impresses me right now. I'm really surprised he doesn't start.
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Old 11-14-07, 05:18 PM
  #113  
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NEW YORK (AP) -- The NBA has spoken with the Los Angeles Lakers about a sexual reference coach Phil Jackson made in a comment following Tuesday night's game in San Antonio.

The Spurs made 13 3-pointers in their 107-92 victory, and Jackson was asked if too much penetration was leading to open outside shooters.
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"We call this a Brokeback Mountain game, because there's so much penetration and kickouts," Jackson said. "It was one of those games."

The 2005 film, which won three Oscars, depicts two cowboys who conceal their homosexual affair.

"The remarks are in poor taste, and the Lakers have assured us such remarks will not occur in the future," league spokesman Brian McIntyre said.



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Old 11-14-07, 05:36 PM
  #114  
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My estimation of Phil Jackson just went up a notch or two.

Funny? Yes definitely

Tasteless? Perhaps to the Society of The Perpetually Offended.
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Old 11-14-07, 05:51 PM
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Phil is a funny dude.

He seems even more laid back than usual - right now especially. It's like he knows something we don't. That makes me feel good having him on the bench. Even with losses - I wouldn't want any other coach.

I am 95% sure he'll sign a new contract.
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Old 11-14-07, 11:30 PM
  #116  
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Ugly 2nd half, but the Lakers pulled away. 4-3 now... with 3 of those wins against quality teams. I hope TMac is ok.
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Old 11-16-07, 05:09 PM
  #117  
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Should be 5-2 but oh well.
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Old 11-17-07, 12:19 AM
  #118  
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Lakers top the Pistons Some ugly shooting there, but an awesome 4th quarter. A funny pass off the ref that lead to a bucket was awesome.
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Old 11-18-07, 10:59 PM
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6-3 now. Lakers crush the Bulls by 28. Jordan Farmar is looking great. Hopefully Kwame's injury isn't too bad.
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Old 11-18-07, 11:29 PM
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Can we get a good Kobe quote to argue about? Or a Laker fan proclaiming his team the favorite for the title? This thread does not deliver so far this year.
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Old 11-19-07, 12:17 AM
  #121  
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I was at tonight's game and it was weird. Seemed like we were out of it the whole time, crowd was dead but we still managed to kill the Bulls.

I think they just shot like shit and we managed to hit a decent number of shots. Just a strange game

Bynum and Farmar both look great.
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Old 11-20-07, 05:19 PM
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http://www.nba.com/magic/news/Magic_....html?rss=true

Magic Acquire Brian Cook and Maurice Evans From L.A. Lakers


Orlando sends Trevor Ariza to the Lakers in three-player deal; Also waives Bo Outlaw

November 20, 2007

Orlando, FL – The Orlando Magic have acquired forward Brian Cook and guard Maurice Evans from the Los Angeles Lakers in exchange for forward Trevor Ariza, General Manager Otis Smith announced today. In addition, the Magic have waived forward Bo Outlaw.

“Brian (Cook) helps bolster our frontcourt,” said Smith. “He is a power forward who shoots the ball extremely well, while also bringing added toughness to our roster. Maurice (Evans) is a tremendous athlete, a solid defender and capable of playing multiple positions. Both Brian and Maurice fit in very well with what we are trying to accomplish.”

Smith also added: “Trevor (Ariza) is a great talent and we certainly wish him well. We also thank Bo (Outlaw) for everything he has done for our organization as a player.”

Cook (6’9”, 250, 12/4/80, Illinois, 4 years) has played in six games (two starts) this season with the L.A. Lakers, averaging 2.3 ppg. and 1.7 rpg. in 11.7 minpg. Evans (6’5”, 220, 11/8/78, Texas, 4 years) has appeared in seven games this season with the Lakers, averaging 4.4 ppg., 1.7 apg. and 1.3 rpg. in 13.7 minpg.

Cook has played in 259 career NBA regular season games, all with the Lakers, averaging 6.6 ppg. and 3.2 rpg. in 16.0 minpg. He has shot .392 (162-413) from three-point range. Cook has also appeared in 25 postseason contests, averaging 3.0 ppg. and 1.6 rpg. in 7.0 minpg. Originally selected in the first round (24th overall) of the 2003 NBA Draft by the Lakers, Cook netted a career-high 28 points on Feb. 7, 2006 @ Dallas and pulled down a career-best 14 rebounds on Mar. 4, 2007 @ Phoenix.

Evans has appeared in 238 career NBA regular season games with Minnesota, Sacramento, Detroit and the Lakers, averaging 6.3 ppg. and 2.5 rpg. in 17.8 minpg. He has also played in 24 playoff outings, averaging 4.0 ppg. and 1.2 rpg. in 10.0 minpg. Evans originally signed as a free agent with Minnesota on July 23, 2001, after he was not selected during the 2001 NBA Draft. He poured in a career-high 26 points on Feb. 25, 2007 @ Golden State and recorded a career-best 14 rebounds on Mar. 8, 2005 vs. Memphis.

Ariza has played in 11 games this season with the Magic, averaging 3.3 ppg. and 2.2 rpg. in 10.5 minpg. Outlaw has played in two games with Orlando this season, averaging 2.0 ppg. in 3.5 minpg.

What the 'f' kind of trade was this for the Lakers? Was it to free up cap space for a big name signing.

Chris
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Old 11-20-07, 05:35 PM
  #123  
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I'm glad to give up Cook. Him and Sasha are my most hated players on the Lakers. Not sure about giving up Mo since he was Kobe's main backup, but I hear Ariza is a great defensive player.
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Old 11-20-07, 05:47 PM
  #124  
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First off, I always liked Mo. It's a shame to see him go, definitely.

That being said, we got rid of Cook! I've bitched and moaned and complained about him for a long time here (mainly because of attitude and lack of effort for being the ultimate one dimensional player) and getting rid of him is amazing news for Lakers fan. I like Ariza's upside even with his injury last year and feel he can compliment some of our players pretty well.

Now that Smush and Cook are gone, we have essentially removed two cancers from our team
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Old 11-20-07, 05:49 PM
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I don't hate it or love it. I guess I don't know too much about this Ariza kid. If he can make up defensively what they lose in Mo - it won't be a bad deal. Mo wasn't getting enough minutes anyway.

I never hated Cook - but he is nothing but a three point shooter. The Lakers have a better version in Vlade. Maybe they're making room for another trade or signing. Do you guys think Webber is a posibility. I don't but it could happen after how well they have looked.
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