The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by Outside on Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:38 pm

Bob,

Well, what I said was a little more nuanced than that, but I guess I did have my Captain Obvious superhero costume on.

It's Friday. Is it five o'clock yet?

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by steve3344 on Sat Jan 26, 2013 2:36 pm

Lakers win-now strategy "destroys 2013 Draft prospects."

We all knew this but this spells it out:

http://sports.yahoo.com/news/lakers-win-now-strategy-destroys-2013-draft-prospects-144100156--nba.html

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by tjmakz on Mon Jan 28, 2013 11:14 am

Before I mention anything about the Lakers I want to say that I am sorry to hear about the injury to Rondo. This could dramatically change how Danny maneuvers the roster going forward. Also, Boston fought a very tough fight against Miami yesterday.

As for the Lakers, the "new offense" (another one) has worked out quite well over the last two games. Having Kobe be the playmaker and Nash as a spot up shooter in many ways plays to their strengths. This is all about the mindset of Kobe. Some games he feels he needs to shoot and shoot to get his team back in the game. If Kobe keeps this mindset, it could be an interesting second half for the Lakers. With Nash's lack of size, speed and strength, he just can't find the cutters in the lane. Jamison, Gasol and Clark all move well without the ball and Kobe has the ability to find them. Because Kobe is so talented playing one on one, teams are at a disadvantage if they try to double team him and he can find the open player.

The Lakers defense has played much better over the last couple of games. They have given up significantly less fast break points compared to how many they had been giving up.

Gasol is starting to look more and more like he is going to buy into what is going on and he is being much more productive. Even if this just increases his trade value, this is a bonus to the Lakers.

I am one person who is quite impressed with how Earl Clark is playing. He is finally showing why he is a former lottery pick. He is 6'10", can defend multiple positions and is showing he is a capable 3 point shooter. He is a nice find with Jordan Hill going down with a hip injury.

Are the Lakers fixed? No. Are they making progress? It looks like they are.

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by bobheckler on Mon Jan 28, 2013 11:49 am

tjmakz wrote:Before I mention anything about the Lakers I want to say that I am sorry to hear about the injury to Rondo. This could dramatically change how Danny maneuvers the roster going forward. Also, Boston fought a very tough fight against Miami yesterday.

As for the Lakers, the "new offense" (another one) has worked out quite well over the last two games. Having Kobe be the playmaker and Nash as a spot up shooter in many ways plays to their strengths. This is all about the mindset of Kobe. Some games he feels he needs to shoot and shoot to get his team back in the game. If Kobe keeps this mindset, it could be an interesting second half for the Lakers. With Nash's lack of size, speed and strength, he just can't find the cutters in the lane. Jamison, Gasol and Clark all move well without the ball and Kobe has the ability to find them. Because Kobe is so talented playing one on one, teams are at a disadvantage if they try to double team him and he can find the open player.

The Lakers defense has played much better over the last couple of games. They have given up significantly less fast break points compared to how many they had been giving up.

Gasol is starting to look more and more like he is going to buy into what is going on and he is being much more productive. Even if this just increases his trade value, this is a bonus to the Lakers.

I am one person who is quite impressed with how Earl Clark is playing. He is finally showing why he is a former lottery pick. He is 6'10", can defend multiple positions and is showing he is a capable 3 point shooter. He is a nice find with Jordan Hill going down with a hip injury.

Are the Lakers fixed? No. Are they making progress? It looks like they are.

TJ,

Great victory by the Lakers yesterday, and not against a bunch of chumps either.

A stellar 2nd half of the season, along with some help from other teams beating the teams ahead of you, and you could be back in the playoff hunt.

bob


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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by sam on Mon Jan 28, 2013 12:31 pm

TJ,

I watched the final quarter of the Lakers-Thunder game, and I was very impressed that the Lakers didn't fold in the clutch against a younger, talented team. (On this board, we've become very familiar with that syndrome.)

I hate to say this, and I hope you won't tell anyone, but I actually found myself rooting for the Lakers down the stretch, and I was really happy that they prevailed. I have lined up tryouts for three shrinks this afternoon, but my preliminary self-diagnosis is that a form of kinship accompanies the adversarial nature of a singular rivalry.

Congratulations from someone who has honestly never doubted that the Lakers would turn it around. I realize that is not yet a firm conclusion, but you certainly have justification for elevated enthusiasm.

I wonder what odds one could get for a Celtics-Lakers final this season.

I hope no one minds, but I have changed the title of this thread, as the former title seems incredibly outdated.

Sam

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by tjmakz on Wed Jan 30, 2013 11:08 am

Three straight wins for the Lakers as they head out for a 7 game 'Grammy' road trip.

This is the 3rd game in a row where Kobe is the primary facilitator. He doesn't want to be the one that brings the ball up and is hounded the length of the court, but once they get into a set, it is extremely difficult to stop Kobe from either scoring or finding the open man. If a team tries to cover Kobe one on one, he can score on a regular basis. The Lakers now have many more open looks then they have had in the past. Meeks, Jamison and Earl Clark are getting and hitting open shots with Kobe as the playmaker. Speaking of Earl Clark, what a find he has been. His defense, rebounding and shooting has been fantastic since he has played regular minutes. Earl has probably played himself into a 2 year $8m contract after this season.

Concerning Kobe, I think Celtics fans should be banned from calling him KoME if he leads the team in assists in a game or does not take the most shot attempts in a game. Smile

Anyway, heading out to a lunch meeting. I ran out of time to discuss last nights game in more detail.

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by bobheckler on Wed Jan 30, 2013 11:10 am

tjmakz wrote:Three straight wins for the Lakers as they head out for a 7 game 'Grammy' road trip.

This is the 3rd game in a row where Kobe is the primary facilitator. He doesn't want to be the one that brings the ball up and is hounded the length of the court, but once they get into a set, it is extremely difficult to stop Kobe from either scoring or finding the open man. If a team tries to cover Kobe one on one, he can score on a regular basis. The Lakers now have many more open looks then they have had in the past. Meeks, Jamison and Earl Clark are getting and hitting open shots with Kobe as the playmaker. Speaking of Earl Clark, what a find he has been. His defense, rebounding and shooting has been fantastic since he has played regular minutes. Earl has probably played himself into a 2 year $8m contract after this season.

Concerning Kobe, I think Celtics fans should be banned from calling him KoME if he leads the team in assists in a game or does not take the most shot attempts in a game. Smile

Anyway, heading out to a lunch meeting. I ran out of time to discuss last nights game in more detail.


TJ,

Fair enough.

How about the games where he takes 30% of their fgas and shoots 40%?


bob


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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by cowens/oldschool on Wed Jan 30, 2013 11:44 am

Lakers making effort to do the extra pass, seems at least can beat the bad teams.

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by bobheckler on Wed Jan 30, 2013 12:14 pm

cowens/oldschool wrote:Lakers making effort to do the extra pass, seems at least can beat the bad teams.

cowens,

And, as evidenced by their win over OKC, some pretty damn good teams too.

Due to their awful start, they need to play really good ball the rest of the way. No losing streaks unless it is followed up by a monster winning streak. This is hardly impossible, especially if they can beat OKC.

Some pundits (and take that with a tablespoon of salt) say that you need 48 wins to make the playoffs in the west. Personally, that sounds a little steep for me, but let's say you need 45 wins. The Lakers are 20-25. That means they would need another 25 wins. With only 37 games left (20+25=45; 82-45=37), that would mean they would have to go 25-12 (.675) the rest of this season, averaging slightly better than 2 out of every 3. Doable, especially if they are healthy and playing well, but tough. And that's just to qualify. If there is another team with 45 wins they'd have to own the tie-breakers against that team too, otherwise they'd need 46 wins to advance (requiring 26-11, .702) and if the #8 team has 46 wins instead of 45 then the hill gets correspondingly steeper, etc. That's why I said it's doable but losing streaks, even small ones, can't be allowed without a monster winning streak right on its tail (a 2 game winning streak would need a 4 game winning streak, a 3 game losing streak needing a 6 game winning streak). The Lakers don't and can't know what the teams in front of them will do the rest of this season, so they have to play like it's the worst possible scenario and hope they get lucky. If the pundits are right and you need 48 wins, then the Lakers would need to go 28-9 (.757) and own the tiebreaker to boot. Going .757 would be the equivalent of a 62 win season. If they pulled that off they would deserve to win the Championship, because that would be a historic rally.

A big difference between the Lakers and the Celtics now is that the Lakers are finally getting it together and are getting stronger (whether they can pull it off with the games left remains to be seen) while the Celtics are in the eighth slot, but are reeling from the loss of Rondo and may slide from here.

I think the fans of both teams are going to be biting their nails the last week or two of the season. I'm thinking of getting some Lee Press Ons, since I've already taken mine down to the cuticle following the Celtics so far.


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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by cowens/oldschool on Wed Jan 30, 2013 12:21 pm

bob I'm thinking everyone will have to pick it up without Rondo and hoping for inspired play from us, our defense could be better with AB and Lee playing together. Instead of relying on Rondo for so much, alot of guys will get oppurtunities to initate offense and create for themselves and others. I'm hoping this will enable players like Green, AB and Lee to develop more of their games and take it up a notch/level, in the long run, it could be good, in the immediate, its necessary.

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by bobheckler on Wed Jan 30, 2013 12:24 pm

cowens/oldschool wrote:bob I'm thinking everyone will have to pick it up without Rondo and hoping for inspired play from us, our defense could be better with AB and Lee playing together. Instead of relying on Rondo for so much, alot of guys will get oppurtunities to initate offense and create for themselves and others. I'm hoping this will enable players like Green, AB and Lee to develop more of their games and take it up a notch/level, in the long run, it could be good, in the immediate, its necessary.

cow,

From your mouth to God's ear, brother.


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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by cowens/oldschool on Wed Jan 30, 2013 12:31 pm

bob we can still win enough to make playoffs, maybe even 5th or 6th seed, keep the faith....after that it will get dicey, it will be exciting and we could be great spoilers. There is such a thing as CELTIC PRIDE!!!

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by cowens/oldschool on Wed Jan 30, 2013 12:32 pm

....I forgot to add Sully to that list, hes gonna pick it up going forward.

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by Outside on Wed Jan 30, 2013 12:56 pm

I didn't watch much of the Laker-Hornet game, but I did hear an interesting observation from Stu Lantz, commentator for Laker broadcasts.

He said that when Kobe is in "shooter" mode, the rest of the team tends to stand around and watch when Kobe has the ball, but these recent games when he's in "facilitator" mode, players move and cut when Kobe has the ball because they know he'll pass it to them.

Even though Kobe has been extraordinarily efficient as a scorer this season, team ball is still better than hero ball, even efficient hero ball.

cowens/oldschool wrote:Lakers making effort to do the extra pass, seems at least can beat the bad teams.
Cow, they did beat OKC, but at this point, I think they'll take any wins they can get. Their next games are against Phoenix, Minnesota, and Detroit, and they'll be more than happy to win those games. If they'd consistently beaten lesser teams, they wouldn't be in the position they're in.

New Orleans has some potential. They're not deep and they've been hit with injuries, but Eric Gordon's back and can make a huge difference for them (he had 25 last night). Gordon, Anthony Davis, Grevious Vasquez, and Ryan Anderson are a nice group, Robin Lopez, Al-Farouq Aminu, Jason Smith, and Roger Mason are decent, and maybe Austin Rivers will develop into a decent player (he shoulda stayed in school). They need to stay healthy, get some experience, and get some depth. They're not the next OKC or anything, but I like their prospects better than, say, Phoenix, Sacramento, and Dallas.

The West is so deep that New Orleans will have trouble getting into the playoffs anytime soon, but there's a lot to like about their team. I won't be surprised to see them creeping up the standings in the second half.


Last edited by Outside on Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:22 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by Outside on Wed Jan 30, 2013 1:20 pm

bobheckler wrote:Some pundits (and take that with a tablespoon of salt) say that you need 48 wins to make the playoffs in the west. Personally, that sounds a little steep for me, but let's say you need 45 wins. The Lakers are 20-25. That means they would need another 25 wins. With only 37 games left (20+25=45; 82-45=37), that would mean they would have to go 25-12 (.675) the rest of this season, averaging slightly better than 2 out of every 3. Doable, especially if they are healthy and playing well, but tough. And that's just to qualify. If there is another team with 45 wins they'd have to own the tie-breakers against that team too, otherwise they'd need 46 wins to advance (requiring 26-11, .702) and if the #8 team has 46 wins instead of 45 then the hill gets correspondingly steeper, etc. That's why I said it's doable but losing streaks, even small ones, can't be allowed without a monster winning streak right on its tail (a 2 game winning streak would need a 4 game winning streak, a 3 game losing streak needing a 6 game winning streak). The Lakers don't and can't know what the teams in front of them will do the rest of this season, so they have to play like it's the worst possible scenario and hope they get lucky. If the pundits are right and you need 48 wins, then the Lakers would need to go 28-9 (.757) and own the tiebreaker to boot. Going .757 would be the equivalent of a 62 win season. If they pulled that off they would deserve to win the Championship, because that would be a historic rally.
When you look at what the Lakers need based on projected wins for the eighth seed and how many they'd have to win to get there, it seems darn near impossible. But if you look at the current standings, they're only four games out of a playoff spot -- three in the loss column -- and that doesn't seem insurmountable at all. They're currently in 10th, and of the teams ahead of them (Portland, Houston, and Utah), they need to pass two of those three to get the 8th spot. That seems a lot more doable than going 28-9 or something like that.

I made the point earlier (I think on this thread) that it won't take as many wins to make the playoffs in the West as in years past because the bottom teams have gotten better, which means fewer wins over lousy teams for the playoff teams to fatten up their records. I still think that's the case. I think 24-13 or 25-12 will get them in. In addition, the Lakers have had the third toughest strength of schedule (SOS) in the West, which means their schedule is relatively easier the rest of the way, while Utah and Portland have the two weakest SOS in the West, which means their schedules will be relatively tougher.

It all depends on whether their recent play sets the tone for the rest of the way or is only a fleeting ray of hope in an otherwise lost season, but I don't think gaining four games in the standings is unreasonable.

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by tjmakz on Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:14 pm

Houston is in 8th place right now with a winning percentage of .532. That works out to be 43 or 44 wins for an 82 game schedule. Making up 3 games is not really a big deal if the Lakers are playing up to their capabilities.

Cowens is right about the Lakers passing. Their being patient while looking for the best shot attempt has allowed them to score many easy baskets. Jamison excels is constantly moving without the ball and he puts himself in great position for lay ups or easy shot attempts. The Lakers had 34 assists on 39 fg's last night and have averaged 30 assists over the last three games, compared to 22 per game before these three games.

The Lakers have also played much better defense recently despite giving up over 100 points last night. LA was up 98-80 with 5 1/2 minutes left and then NO hit 8 straight shots, 2 of which were 3 pointers and one was an and-one. They scored 19 points in less than 3 minutes to make the game look closer then it really was. When Eric Gordon and Ryan Anderson get hot, they can drain 3 after 3.

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by tjmakz on Thu Jan 31, 2013 2:06 pm

There are bad losses and there are really bad losses.
The Lakers had a really, really bad loss last night.
Truly, a self-inflicted embarrassing loss.
Some nights the other team will be in a zone and you are lucky to stay in the game. That happened when Boston played at the Clippers and the Kings this season and when the Lakers played at the Knicks. The Clippers, Kings and Knicks were just plain flat-out hot. You accept those losses and move on.

In last night's Lakers/Suns game, the Suns didn't play very well at all outside of Beasley. The Lakers had 19 assists and 19 turnovers which isn't exactly a formula for success. One person I am hating on today is Pau. I can accept that Pau's game has diminished. He does not score down on the low block like he used to even when Dwight is out of the game. Pau had a very ineffective 14 pt, 5 reb, 4 TO game in 37 minutes. What I don't like about Pau is how he stabs D'Antoni in the back with any chance he gets. When Pau was benched in the 4th quarter against New Orleans due to NO going with a very small lineup, Pau voiced his displeasure. Here was D'Antoni's response to Pau's comments.

Dave McMenamin: D'Antoni on Pau expressing his frustration about being benched: "I guess the 'all for one' lasted about 48 hours. Not bad"

Last night before Dwight left with his shoulder injury (UGH), I was hoping that D'Antoni would replace Gasol with a more energized and more effective player in Jamison. Pau has been great as a Laker and has mostly been a trooper, but I look forward to the day when the Lakers get pieces that fit better then Pau does.

My aspirations for this season have gone from championship contender to making the playoffs, hoping they could get two games of playoff revenue. I think they could compete with San Antonio but would be dismantled by OKC. I will always be a Lakers junkie who spends way too much time in my life worrying about, reading about, and watching them even if it means that I will get no more then 4 1/2 hours of sleep for all west coast games. The Lakers are in my bloodstream but I feel like I am being slowly poisoned this season.

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by sam on Thu Jan 31, 2013 3:30 pm

TJ,

I think that sometimes, when a team's having a disappointing season, something clicks in and they suddenly "get it." Often, something dramatic is required for the turnaround to be "real." For example, I had hoped that the five-game winning streak would be a catalyst for the Celtics, but it turned out there was nothing catalytic enough for it to be "real.

I now hope that the upside of the very unfortunate Rondo departure is proving dramatic enough to jump start the team in a more constructive direction. But, even if it is, I expect some backsliding along the way. Acclimating to a different approach seldom happens seamlessly.

I won't be at all surprised if last night's Lakers' loss will serve as a speed bump along the new (and much more positive) road on which the Lakers seem to be embarking. I know you won't quit on them, just as I will never quit on the Celtics.

I even recall once making an error in the third grade right in the middle of my meteoric ascension to perfection.

Sam

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by gyso on Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:08 am

Kobe Bryant dishes on Celtics:

BOSTON -- The Boston Celtics have lost their court leader for the season and are clinging to the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. The Los Angeles Lakers are battling an array of injuries (the most recent a torn plantar fascia that will sideline Pau Gasol for at least a month) and are languishing in 10th place in the Western Conference, excluded from the current postseason parameters.

Even so, good luck trying to tell Kobe Bryant that the Celtics-Lakers rivalry is dead, or that Thursday's game at TD Garden doesn't matter. Normally, Boston vs. LA generates an edginess (and bitterness) that stokes the fires of this long-time rivalry, and usually Kobe revels in the misfortunes of the men in green. But Bryant takes no pleasure in the torn ACL suffered by Rajon Rondo or the uncertainty surrounding the futures of two of his most ardent foes, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett.

Brian Babineau/NBAE/Getty ImagesKobe Bryant says he's sorry the Celtics are without Rajon Rondo and scoffs at the idea that the point guard's absence makes Boston better.

"I'm not happy about what's happening to them," Bryant said. "We're all running out of time. So I understand."

Kobe likes Rondo. For the rest, see:

http://espn.go.com/boston/nba/story/_/id/8924289/kobe-bryant-feels-pain-rajon-rondo-boston-celtics

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Re: The Lakers' Season after Starting 1-4

Post by bobheckler on Thu Feb 07, 2013 12:13 pm

Kobe calls out Howard. This is pressure Howard has never felt before (that's according to Kobe too).

And he thinks the pressure in Brooklyn would be less? He doesn't know NYers like I do if he does...



http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=espn:8925252



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