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Hoopsworld: Mbenga provides some perspective

Hoopsworld: Mbenga provides some perspective 
Author: 20,000 
Posted: 02/10 7:05 AM 
 
Sorry if already posted, but I looked and looked and did not see it anywhere.

Provides some glimpse about Mbenga. Even if he doesn't stick with the Lakers, I wish him the best throughout the rest of his career and life.

Hoopsworld

Quote:
Mbenga Provides Some Perspective

By: Preetom Bhattacharya

Pau Gasol hasn't played a game in Staples Center yet, but he can expect a hero's welcome when he arrives for the Lakers' Feb. 19 contest against the Atlanta Hawks. All of a sudden, vendors along the southern boundary of Downtown Los Angeles proudly hawk the red and yellow stripes of the Spanish flag to be waved at upcoming Laker home games.

But it's a different recently-acquired Laker that better earns the title of a "hero": his name is DJ Mbenga.

Mbenga hails from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Zaire), a country ravaged by war, disease and poverty for years. The Congo has been the battle ground for what has been termed "Africa's World War," with rebels and armies of neighboring countries warring over Congo's immense natural resources, including sprawling forests, vast mineral resources (like diamonds), and the mighty Congo River, the fifth longest river in the world.

"We come from a country where a lot of terrible stuff is going on over there," Mbenga told HOOPSWORLD recently. "We know right now, there's hard political stuff over there. It's going to take time."


Quote:
But for DJ Mbenga, tragedy hit even closer to home. Mbenga's father worked for the Congolese government and when his term ended, the new regime looked to purge all those that worked for the old administration. Mbenga's father died in unknown circumstances and as the war raged on, DJ himself was jailed and faced execution.

After nine months of incredibly difficult circumstances in prison, Mbenga escaped; his brother had bribed one of the prison guards and DJ immediately flew to Belgium, where he sought political asylum
. While living at a shelter in Belgium, Mbenga was "discovered" by a basketball coach, leading him on the journey that eventually landed him in the NBA and now to his second 10-day contract with one of the most storied franchises in the league.


Quote:
Mbenga prides himself on his defensive ability, helping his teammates should they break down on the perimeter. "They know they've got a bodyguard," Mbenga said of his teammates. "They know, if somebody can get the score, he's not going to come around again. He's going to think two times now. 'Oh, DJ's there. If he can block shots, then he's going to knock me down.' That's the way I'm going to do it. That's the way I've got to be. That's what I have to do."


Re: Hoopsworld: Mbenga provides some perspective 
Author: LakerDYnasty72 
Posted: 02/10 7:22 AM 
 
encina1 wrote:
Sorry if already posted, but I looked and looked and did not see it anywhere.

Provides some glimpse about Mbenga. Even if he doesn't stick with the Lakers, I wish him the best throughout the rest of his career and life.

Hoopsworld

Quote:
Mbenga Provides Some Perspective

By: Preetom Bhattacharya

Pau Gasol hasn't played a game in Staples Center yet, but he can expect a hero's welcome when he arrives for the Lakers' Feb. 19 contest against the Atlanta Hawks. All of a sudden, vendors along the southern boundary of Downtown Los Angeles proudly hawk the red and yellow stripes of the Spanish flag to be waved at upcoming Laker home games.

But it's a different recently-acquired Laker that better earns the title of a "hero": his name is DJ Mbenga.

Mbenga hails from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Zaire), a country ravaged by war, disease and poverty for years. The Congo has been the battle ground for what has been termed "Africa's World War," with rebels and armies of neighboring countries warring over Congo's immense natural resources, including sprawling forests, vast mineral resources (like diamonds), and the mighty Congo River, the fifth longest river in the world.

"We come from a country where a lot of terrible stuff is going on over there," Mbenga told HOOPSWORLD recently. "We know right now, there's hard political stuff over there. It's going to take time."


Quote:
But for DJ Mbenga, tragedy hit even closer to home. Mbenga's father worked for the Congolese government and when his term ended, the new regime looked to purge all those that worked for the old administration. Mbenga's father died in unknown circumstances and as the war raged on, DJ himself was jailed and faced execution.

After nine months of incredibly difficult circumstances in prison, Mbenga escaped; his brother had bribed one of the prison guards and DJ immediately flew to Belgium, where he sought political asylum
. While living at a shelter in Belgium, Mbenga was "discovered" by a basketball coach, leading him on the journey that eventually landed him in the NBA and now to his second 10-day contract with one of the most storied franchises in the league.


Quote:
Mbenga prides himself on his defensive ability, helping his teammates should they break down on the perimeter. "They know they've got a bodyguard," Mbenga said of his teammates. "They know, if somebody can get the score, he's not going to come around again. He's going to think two times now. 'Oh, DJ's there. If he can block shots, then he's going to knock me down.' That's the way I'm going to do it. That's the way I've got to be. That's what I have to do."


If only for that mentality I wish the Lakers would keep him. I've had this memo filed in my head since it occurred. I'm referring to the incident when Raja Bell collared Kobe. That was for me the defining moment why Kwame would never be the answer. Kobe needed exactly what Mbenga brings. The guy is the kind you want to have around for his mentality, and of course the six additional fouls we'd have should we meet Shaq and his boys.


 
Author: Raptor2k 
Posted: 02/10 7:22 AM 
 
=o


 
Author: Cardom 
Posted: 02/10 7:28 AM 
 
What a story. This guy is a warrior.


 
Author: #StayInYoLane 
Posted: 02/10 7:31 AM 
 
Dang... its not we signed him because we felt sorry... he actually did the little things for this teams. Get blocks, rebound, and pure hustle.

TOO bad we have to let him go...


 
Author: ignardlakerfan 
Posted: 02/10 7:33 AM 
 
man he been through a lot...i hope they keep him around


 
Author: LakerLanny 
Posted: 02/10 7:42 AM 
 
Man, I had no idea....no matter what happens with the Lakers, I hope this kid gets a chance to stick in the league.


 
Author: gng930 
Posted: 02/10 7:47 AM 
 
DO IT AGAIN MITCH!!!


 
Author: ishi331 
Posted: 02/10 9:22 AM 
 
Wow, never knew he had to go through that.
Keep the DJ!


 
Author: calistrtballr 
Posted: 02/10 9:50 AM 
 
They should keep him, Mihm is 3 years past retirement.


 
Author: KingKobe 
Posted: 02/10 10:19 AM 
 
I don't see the harm in keeping him. And anyway, with him and Coby Karl, we've got to have the best stories on the end of the bench as any team of the league.


 
Author: Tanlentueux 
Posted: 02/10 10:30 AM 
 
I live in Belgium and i know that story: that's why i LOVE this guy.


 
Author: G35CK 
Posted: 02/10 11:29 AM 
 
KingKobe wrote:
I don't see the harm in keeping him. And anyway, with him and Coby Karl, we've got to have the best stories on the end of the bench as any team of the league.


Don't forget Ronny's open-heart surgery.


 
Author: kups 
Posted: 02/10 11:54 AM 
 
LakerLanny wrote:
Man, I had no idea....no matter what happens with the Lakers, I hope this kid gets a chance to stick in the league.


and 1.


 
Author: Worthy42 
Posted: 02/10 12:05 PM 
 
Come playoff time and various times throughout the year we need a guy like this on the bench, not softie Mihm or Luke, ugh. When Shaq's going to be there knocking Andrew and Paul around we need to bring in a guy that's not going to be afraid of backing down from anyone, Shaq-circus and all.


 
Author: limchrc 
Posted: 02/10 1:35 PM 
 
Wow, an eye opener...


 
Author: Legacy 
Posted: 02/10 4:03 PM 
 
Even before this story I thought we should give him a long(er) term contract. He is already better than Kwame in almost every aspect of his game. He still has room to improve, and we have spots open. Why not?

And wow, that is an amazing story. I would like to hear a longer and more detailed version of it. This story really peaked my interest in DJ. I will be rooting for him in a different way from here on out.

Good luck DJ. If we don't keep you, I hope you get a spot on another teams roster in the near future.


 
Author: Tony Montana 
Posted: 02/10 4:30 PM 
 
G35CK wrote:
KingKobe wrote:
I don't see the harm in keeping him. And anyway, with him and Coby Karl, we've got to have the best stories on the end of the bench as any team of the league.


Don't forget Ronny's open-heart surgery.


Add that in, and you have enough halftime stories on this team for the whole championship series


 
Author: LakerFan1972 
Posted: 02/10 4:34 PM 
 
Legacy wrote:
Even before this story I thought we should give him long(er) term contract. He is already better than Kwame in almost every aspect of his game. He still has room to improve, and we have spots open. Why not?

And wow, that is an amazing story. I would like to hear a longer and more detailed version of it. This story really peaked my interest in DJ. I will be rooting for him in a different way from here on out.

Good luck DJ. If we don't keep you, I hope you get a spot on another teams roster in the near future.


It would not surprise me if he is picked up and picked up by a Western Conference team trying to load up to deal with Shaq in the playoffs.

I hope Lakers do keep DJ.


 
Author: Raptor2k 
Posted: 02/10 4:48 PM 
 
The Lakers would be stupid not to keep him for the season, imo. He's been way more solid than Kwame, and definitely has a better feel for the game. Well, who doesn't, but still.


 
Author: golden1 
Posted: 02/10 4:55 PM 
 
Remember that poll about keeping DJ? It was one of the most lopsided polls ever on LG.


 
Author: Darkndeep 
Posted: 02/10 5:22 PM 
 
I have to hand it to the guy: he's done more with his life, under greater adverse conditions, than most. I hope that he makes it somewhere.


Re: Hoopsworld: Mbenga provides some perspective 
Author: prisma8slg 
Posted: 02/10 5:30 PM 
 
LakerDYnasty72 wrote:
encina1 wrote:

Quote:
Mbenga prides himself on his defensive ability, helping his teammates should they break down on the perimeter. "They know they've got a bodyguard," Mbenga said of his teammates. "They know, if somebody can get the score, he's not going to come around again. He's going to think two times now. 'Oh, DJ's there. If he can block shots, then he's going to knock me down.' That's the way I'm going to do it. That's the way I've got to be. That's what I have to do."


If only for that mentality I wish the Lakers would keep him. I've had this memo filed in my head since it occurred. I'm referring to the incident when Raja Bell collared Kobe. That was for me the defining moment why Kwame would never be the answer. Kobe needed exactly what Mbenga brings. The guy is the kind you want to have around for his mentality, and of course the six additional fouls we'd have should we meet Shaq and his boys.


agreed. we need someone on the team like that. it kills me when an opposing guard keeps slashing and scoring. we need someone to hard foul someone every now and then, make someone think twice about getting in the paint. and we also need someone to push the other team around.

I wish Mbenga the best in the rest of his career.

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