Michael Cooper or Byron Scott?
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Michael Cooper or Byron Scott
Michael Cooper
80%
 80%  [ 33 ]
Byron Scott
19%
 19%  [ 8 ]
Total Votes : 41

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2020 7:59 am    Post subject:

non-player zealot wrote:
Came across an 89 home gm vs GS on an old tape yesterday where Magic strained his hamstring and was reacting the same way with Vitti on the court that he did in the Finals. Spinning around in disgust at the verdict. He left the game and Lakers lost (Teagle 15/21 FGM, dayum). Foreboding for the playoffs. Didn't recall him straining it in a game that RS. He was out for a handful of gms including DET and BOS, which pissed him off no doubt. But now you know for sure that his hamstring had issue in Feb. You sure you wanna have that late May Finals training camp, Coach?

https://www.basketball-reference.com/boxscores/198902080LAL.html


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2020 10:20 am    Post subject:

Cooooooooooooooop!
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2020 1:09 pm    Post subject:

Why, when they played the same position, did Riley play Scott more minutes than Cooper?
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2020 1:58 pm    Post subject:

Loved both, of course. Coop is more of a favorite, which is probably the norm for majority of Lakers fans. The socks, the strings, the Coooops, the coop-a-loops, the D, etc. Byron was great at what they needed him for and he remains seriously one of the most underrated in-game dunkers of the '80s (as NPZ noted, pre hammy especially). Just springy. And such a pretty jumper, can easily picture him with a little set shot 3 or jumping high off the dribble for a pull-up J.

I trusted Coop more. End of Game 4 of 87 Finals, Coop camps out at 3-point line and knocks down huge one to cut into the Celtics lead. And Byron so often could be just awful on the road in big games.

Interesting though that both hit the 2 biggest shots to keep the repeat alive (along with Cap's FTs vs. Detroit). Cooper in Game 5 vs. Jazz in West semis. He misses, series goes back to Utah 3-2 for Jazz and Game 6 could have been ugggggly. And Coop just drained that thing. Then Scott with Lakers down 3 with minute to go against Pistons in Game 6. If he misses that little pullup J and Detroit gets the board...........the repeat is probably dying there. And I still get a jolt thinking about Byron's dunk over Laimbeer to kickstart the third quarter blitz in Game 7 (like I said, such a good dunker).

As for Riley trusting Scott more, as Coop aged Scott got more time but in like 85, 86 that certainly wasn't the case. They were pretty much even. Riley used both perfectly, I think. Which is why I can't really choose one that's better. Both were great at their roles and the team needed both equally. But...gun to head, I have to send a lineup out there in final 5 minutes with game on the line, Coop is my guy.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2020 2:45 pm    Post subject:

spflakers wrote:
And I still get a jolt thinking about Byron's dunk over Laimbeer to kickstart the third quarter blitz in Game 7 (like I said, such a good dunker).


Might be my all-time BScott moment there. They weren't sharp in that first half and that set the tone for the stretch that followed. Two points aren't always two points, as they say.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2020 7:13 pm    Post subject:

DancingBarry wrote:
spflakers wrote:
And I still get a jolt thinking about Byron's dunk over Laimbeer to kickstart the third quarter blitz in Game 7 (like I said, such a good dunker).


Might be my all-time BScott moment there. They weren't sharp in that first half and that set the tone for the stretch that followed. Two points aren't always two points, as they say.


https://youtu.be/J-QJdxZx7p8?t=15s
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PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2020 3:26 pm    Post subject:

spflakers wrote:
Loved both, of course. Coop is more of a favorite, which is probably the norm for majority of Lakers fans. The socks, the strings, the Coooops, the coop-a-loops, the D, etc. Byron was great at what they needed him for and he remains seriously one of the most underrated in-game dunkers of the '80s (as NPZ noted, pre hammy especially). Just springy. And such a pretty jumper, can easily picture him with a little set shot 3 or jumping high off the dribble for a pull-up J.

I trusted Coop more. End of Game 4 of 87 Finals, Coop camps out at 3-point line and knocks down huge one to cut into the Celtics lead. And Byron so often could be just awful on the road in big games.

Interesting though that both hit the 2 biggest shots to keep the repeat alive (along with Cap's FTs vs. Detroit). Cooper in Game 5 vs. Jazz in West semis. He misses, series goes back to Utah 3-2 for Jazz and Game 6 could have been ugggggly. And Coop just drained that thing. Then Scott with Lakers down 3 with minute to go against Pistons in Game 6. If he misses that little pullup J and Detroit gets the board...........the repeat is probably dying there. And I still get a jolt thinking about Byron's dunk over Laimbeer to kickstart the third quarter blitz in Game 7 (like I said, such a good dunker).

As for Riley trusting Scott more, as Coop aged Scott got more time but in like 85, 86 that certainly wasn't the case. They were pretty much even. Riley used both perfectly, I think. Which is why I can't really choose one that's better. Both were great at their roles and the team needed both equally. But...gun to head, I have to send a lineup out there in final 5 minutes with game on the line, Coop is my guy.

Scott still averaged more minutes in 84-85 and 85-86. He also averaged 6-7 points more than Cooper.

People picking Cooper either weren't wathing games then, are being overly emotional towards Coop, or have sullied thoughts of Scott because of his coaching stint here.

He was a better player. That's no disrespect toward Cooper. Cooper was fantastic. It's just a testiment to how good Scoot was.

Scott gets underrated like Anderson Hunt was underrated on those Runnin' Rebels teams. Augmon, Larry Johnson and Gregor Anthony got all the shine but Anderson Hunt was the team's second leading scorer and played bulldog defense.

Scott was similar. He NEVER got any shine or press, but he was invaluable and just plain better than Cooper. If Cooper was better, Riley would've played him more. Riley didn't though, even though they played the same position. When you take emotions and sentimentality out of it, Scott was just better.
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2020 6:04 pm    Post subject:

Joe Pesci wrote:
spflakers wrote:
Loved both, of course. Coop is more of a favorite, which is probably the norm for majority of Lakers fans. The socks, the strings, the Coooops, the coop-a-loops, the D, etc. Byron was great at what they needed him for and he remains seriously one of the most underrated in-game dunkers of the '80s (as NPZ noted, pre hammy especially). Just springy. And such a pretty jumper, can easily picture him with a little set shot 3 or jumping high off the dribble for a pull-up J.

I trusted Coop more. End of Game 4 of 87 Finals, Coop camps out at 3-point line and knocks down huge one to cut into the Celtics lead. And Byron so often could be just awful on the road in big games.

Interesting though that both hit the 2 biggest shots to keep the repeat alive (along with Cap's FTs vs. Detroit). Cooper in Game 5 vs. Jazz in West semis. He misses, series goes back to Utah 3-2 for Jazz and Game 6 could have been ugggggly. And Coop just drained that thing. Then Scott with Lakers down 3 with minute to go against Pistons in Game 6. If he misses that little pullup J and Detroit gets the board...........the repeat is probably dying there. And I still get a jolt thinking about Byron's dunk over Laimbeer to kickstart the third quarter blitz in Game 7 (like I said, such a good dunker).

As for Riley trusting Scott more, as Coop aged Scott got more time but in like 85, 86 that certainly wasn't the case. They were pretty much even. Riley used both perfectly, I think. Which is why I can't really choose one that's better. Both were great at their roles and the team needed both equally. But...gun to head, I have to send a lineup out there in final 5 minutes with game on the line, Coop is my guy.

Scott still averaged more minutes in 84-85 and 85-86. He also averaged 6-7 points more than Cooper.

People picking Cooper either weren't wathing games then, are being overly emotional towards Coop, or have sullied thoughts of Scott because of his coaching stint here.

He was a better player. That's no disrespect toward Cooper. Cooper was fantastic. It's just a testiment to how good Scoot was.

Scott gets underrated like Anderson Hunt was underrated on those Runnin' Rebels teams. Augmon, Larry Johnson and Gregor Anthony got all the shine but Anderson Hunt was the team's second leading scorer and played bulldog defense.

Scott was similar. He NEVER got any shine or press, but he was invaluable and just plain better than Cooper. If Cooper was better, Riley would've played him more. Riley didn't though, even though they played the same position. When you take emotions and sentimentality out of it, Scott was just better.


I love Baby B, no doubt. No problem putting him above Coop. And definitely for me, and I think many others, there is emotional element to the Coop selection. That said, the more minutes part, when it's just a handful of minutes some of those seasons, that is pretty much explained by Scott starting (consider that's minimum like 5 minutes at the start of the first quarter and third quarter where Coop's not in).

But who was playing the big moments. Isn't that where we see who Riles really trusted more? As far as I know there aren't breakdowns for fourth quarter minutes back then. And like I said, Byron was huge in many big moments, though he also missed lots of big shots that still annoy. But he did hit the shot against Pistons, and there's no repeat without it.

But speaking of folks not watching games and to take just one example about who Riley maybe trusted more, who he thought was better....

Game 4, 1987 Finals. One of the most important games in Lakers history. Toughest road environment at the time in all of sports. In other words, the place where you are going to ride with the realest of the real. And in the fourth quarter of that game, here are the minutes played:
Byron: less than a minute, brought in when Magic banged his knee, sat down immediately when Magic checked back in.
Coop: 12

I don't know how you watch that game, when both are in their primes, and think it's obvious that Riley preferred Byron.

Go back a few years, another of the biggest games in Lakers history. Game 2, 1985 Finals. Again a hostile environment. 8 minutes to go Riles yanks Byron. Coop stays. About four minutes later Byron comes in but only because Worthy fouled out. He was going with Cooper over Byron.

There are going to be many many more examples of that. And of course games where the opposite happened. But in the biggest moments, I think it's pretty clear that Riley always trusted Cooper. Especially pre 1988 and before Coop sprained his ankle and slowed down.

But again, Byron was awesome, I love him (even after the coaching!) and if he's ahead of Coop in people's eyes no arguments, but the "just plain better" argument, no way. And to say people who pick Coop didn't watch the games is up there with the guy here who said Riley routinely benched Magic in the final moments of games for defensive purposes.

And from 84-87, if one of them was going to be missing a game, I would MUCH rather it have been Byron. Coop could be shooting guard. But he could also be point guard. Byron was not giving you that versatility, at all.

Let's look at the biggest series from the time the two played together, from 84-90 (the caveat being Byron's a rookie in '84 so that year is going to be bit unfair to him and Coop's over the hill by '90 so the same).

1984 NBA Finals
1985 NBA Finals
1986 West Finals
1987 NBA Finals
1988 NBA Finals
1989 West Finals (since Byron didn't play Finals)
1990 West semis

The stats:
1984 Finals:
Byron: 15 minutes per game, 6 points per game, 1 reb., .7 assists. 47 percent
Coop: 37.4 minutes, 13.4 points, 3.6 reb., 5.3 assists, 46 percent

1985 Finals
Byron: 34.7 minutes, 11.2 points, 3.7 Reb., 2.2 assists, 39.5 percent
Cooper: 25.5 minutes, 10.2 points, 2 rebounds, 3.7 assists, 58 percent

1986 West Finals
Byron: 35.8 minutes, 13.2 points, 4 reb., 3.6 assists, 44 percent
Coop: 29.8 minutes, 10 points, 4 reb., 4.8 assists, 46 percent

1987 Finals
Byron: 30.2 MPG, 11.8 points, 3 Reb., 2.3 assists, 48 percent shooting
Coop: 29.8 minutes, 12 points, 2 Reb., 4.7 assists, 54 percent shooting

1988 Finals
Byron: 40 MPG, 18.9 points, 4.9 reb., 2 assists, 47 percent
Coop: 25.1 minutes, 3.7 points, 1.6 reb., 2.1 points, 20 percent

1989 West Finals
Byron: 37 MPG, 24.8 points, 4 Reb., 2 assists, 58 percent shooting
Coop: 26.3 minutes, 8.5 points, 3.5 Reb., 4.3 assists, 52 percent

1990 West Semis
Byron: 34 MPG, 13 PPG, 3 Reb., 3 Assists; 46 percent shooting,
Coop: 22 MPG, 4.2 points, 3.0 assists, 3.0 rebounds, 36 percent shooting,

If I'm Harold Lederman, I'm scoring this 3 series clearly Coop's advantage, 3 series clearly in Byron's advantage, 1 draw. And this is just offense. Doesn't include defense, which, while I loved what Byron brought on D, no one in the NBA is putting him above Coop on that end. But just for fun:
All-NBA Defensive teams: Byron 0 first team selections. 0 second team selections. Cooper: 5 first team, 3 second team.

And I really don't think Riley ever would claim one over the other, especially not when we had Coop for 80-83 before Byron was even here. Purely head to head, by 88 and onward, yeah, Byron, sometimes by a large margin as Coop faded and probably should have put down humanely in the 88 Finals. But when they were together before that totally even and when you throw in what Coop did pre-Byron, it's easy to see why many would take his career as a Laker overall. Just as I would.
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2020 1:59 am    Post subject:

spflakers wrote:
Joe Pesci wrote:
spflakers wrote:
Loved both, of course. Coop is more of a favorite, which is probably the norm for majority of Lakers fans. The socks, the strings, the Coooops, the coop-a-loops, the D, etc. Byron was great at what they needed him for and he remains seriously one of the most underrated in-game dunkers of the '80s (as NPZ noted, pre hammy especially). Just springy. And such a pretty jumper, can easily picture him with a little set shot 3 or jumping high off the dribble for a pull-up J.

I trusted Coop more. End of Game 4 of 87 Finals, Coop camps out at 3-point line and knocks down huge one to cut into the Celtics lead. And Byron so often could be just awful on the road in big games.

Interesting though that both hit the 2 biggest shots to keep the repeat alive (along with Cap's FTs vs. Detroit). Cooper in Game 5 vs. Jazz in West semis. He misses, series goes back to Utah 3-2 for Jazz and Game 6 could have been ugggggly. And Coop just drained that thing. Then Scott with Lakers down 3 with minute to go against Pistons in Game 6. If he misses that little pullup J and Detroit gets the board...........the repeat is probably dying there. And I still get a jolt thinking about Byron's dunk over Laimbeer to kickstart the third quarter blitz in Game 7 (like I said, such a good dunker).

As for Riley trusting Scott more, as Coop aged Scott got more time but in like 85, 86 that certainly wasn't the case. They were pretty much even. Riley used both perfectly, I think. Which is why I can't really choose one that's better. Both were great at their roles and the team needed both equally. But...gun to head, I have to send a lineup out there in final 5 minutes with game on the line, Coop is my guy.

Scott still averaged more minutes in 84-85 and 85-86. He also averaged 6-7 points more than Cooper.

People picking Cooper either weren't wathing games then, are being overly emotional towards Coop, or have sullied thoughts of Scott because of his coaching stint here.

He was a better player. That's no disrespect toward Cooper. Cooper was fantastic. It's just a testiment to how good Scoot was.

Scott gets underrated like Anderson Hunt was underrated on those Runnin' Rebels teams. Augmon, Larry Johnson and Gregor Anthony got all the shine but Anderson Hunt was the team's second leading scorer and played bulldog defense.

Scott was similar. He NEVER got any shine or press, but he was invaluable and just plain better than Cooper. If Cooper was better, Riley would've played him more. Riley didn't though, even though they played the same position. When you take emotions and sentimentality out of it, Scott was just better.


I love Baby B, no doubt. No problem putting him above Coop. And definitely for me, and I think many others, there is emotional element to the Coop selection. That said, the more minutes part, when it's just a handful of minutes some of those seasons, that is pretty much explained by Scott starting (consider that's minimum like 5 minutes at the start of the first quarter and third quarter where Coop's not in).

But who was playing the big moments. Isn't that where we see who Riles really trusted more? As far as I know there aren't breakdowns for fourth quarter minutes back then. And like I said, Byron was huge in many big moments, though he also missed lots of big shots that still annoy. But he did hit the shot against Pistons, and there's no repeat without it.

But speaking of folks not watching games and to take just one example about who Riley maybe trusted more, who he thought was better....

Game 4, 1987 Finals. One of the most important games in Lakers history. Toughest road environment at the time in all of sports. In other words, the place where you are going to ride with the realest of the real. And in the fourth quarter of that game, here are the minutes played:
Byron: less than a minute, brought in when Magic banged his knee, sat down immediately when Magic checked back in.
Coop: 12

I don't know how you watch that game, when both are in their primes, and think it's obvious that Riley preferred Byron.

Go back a few years, another of the biggest games in Lakers history. Game 2, 1985 Finals. Again a hostile environment. 8 minutes to go Riles yanks Byron. Coop stays. About four minutes later Byron comes in but only because Worthy fouled out. He was going with Cooper over Byron.

There are going to be many many more examples of that. And of course games where the opposite happened. But in the biggest moments, I think it's pretty clear that Riley always trusted Cooper. Especially pre 1988 and before Coop sprained his ankle and slowed down.

But again, Byron was awesome, I love him (even after the coaching!) and if he's ahead of Coop in people's eyes no arguments, but the "just plain better" argument, no way. And to say people who pick Coop didn't watch the games is up there with the guy here who said Riley routinely benched Magic in the final moments of games for defensive purposes.

And from 84-87, if one of them was going to be missing a game, I would MUCH rather it have been Byron. Coop could be shooting guard. But he could also be point guard. Byron was not giving you that versatility, at all.

Let's look at the biggest series from the time the two played together, from 84-90 (the caveat being Byron's a rookie in '84 so that year is going to be bit unfair to him and Coop's over the hill by '90 so the same).

1984 NBA Finals
1985 NBA Finals
1986 West Finals
1987 NBA Finals
1988 NBA Finals
1989 West Finals (since Byron didn't play Finals)
1990 West semis

The stats:
1984 Finals:
Byron: 15 minutes per game, 6 points per game, 1 reb., .7 assists. 47 percent
Coop: 37.4 minutes, 13.4 points, 3.6 reb., 5.3 assists, 46 percent

1985 Finals
Byron: 34.7 minutes, 11.2 points, 3.7 Reb., 2.2 assists, 39.5 percent
Cooper: 25.5 minutes, 10.2 points, 2 rebounds, 3.7 assists, 58 percent

1986 West Finals
Byron: 35.8 minutes, 13.2 points, 4 reb., 3.6 assists, 44 percent
Coop: 29.8 minutes, 10 points, 4 reb., 4.8 assists, 46 percent

1987 Finals
Byron: 30.2 MPG, 11.8 points, 3 Reb., 2.3 assists, 48 percent shooting
Coop: 29.8 minutes, 12 points, 2 Reb., 4.7 assists, 54 percent shooting

1988 Finals
Byron: 40 MPG, 18.9 points, 4.9 reb., 2 assists, 47 percent
Coop: 25.1 minutes, 3.7 points, 1.6 reb., 2.1 points, 20 percent

1989 West Finals
Byron: 37 MPG, 24.8 points, 4 Reb., 2 assists, 58 percent shooting
Coop: 26.3 minutes, 8.5 points, 3.5 Reb., 4.3 assists, 52 percent

1990 West Semis
Byron: 34 MPG, 13 PPG, 3 Reb., 3 Assists; 46 percent shooting,
Coop: 22 MPG, 4.2 points, 3.0 assists, 3.0 rebounds, 36 percent shooting,

If I'm Harold Lederman, I'm scoring this 3 series clearly Coop's advantage, 3 series clearly in Byron's advantage, 1 draw. And this is just offense. Doesn't include defense, which, while I loved what Byron brought on D, no one in the NBA is putting him above Coop on that end. But just for fun:
All-NBA Defensive teams: Byron 0 first team selections. 0 second team selections. Cooper: 5 first team, 3 second team.

And I really don't think Riley ever would claim one over the other, especially not when we had Coop for 80-83 before Byron was even here. Purely head to head, by 88 and onward, yeah, Byron, sometimes by a large margin as Coop faded and probably should have put down humanely in the 88 Finals. But when they were together before that totally even and when you throw in what Coop did pre-Byron, it's easy to see why many would take his career as a Laker overall. Just as I would.

Bravo sir! "This is why we play the games."

You're right. I concede that I matched the Scott disrespect in this thread by over inflating Scott at Cooper's expense.

I also concede that I was too focused on Scott's peak seasons, especially 1989 where he was quietly the Laker's leading scorer.

Your post is right and exact because it is properly calibrated and measured.

I'm fine with the notion of it being a wash when you think of their entire careers. I was the only person here speaking to Scott's importance. The truth is what you stated. Excellent post. Fair-minded posts like yours is the reason I come here to read.
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2020 1:56 pm    Post subject:

spflakers wrote:

People picking Cooper either weren't wathing games then, are being overly emotional towards Coop, or have sullied thoughts of Scott because of his coaching stint here.


I don't think that's it.

Generally, I would say most people rank Cooper over Byron because Cooper is one of the best defenders in NBA history.

He won two DPoY awards, made 8 all-defensive teams, and even got a few votes for MVP a couple of years.

Also, he was on 5 ring teams compared to Byron's 3.

Byron was a better scorer, who lead the league in third-point shooting one year. Very solid all around player who never received any postseason honors.

I can see someone choosing Byron, but I believe that's a minority perspective. And it's based on respect for Cooper's defense, not on emotions.
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2020 2:50 pm    Post subject:

DancingBarry wrote:
Bol wrote:
I think Byron was the better individual player, but Coop's versatility made him a force multiplier because he could play 2 ways at 3 different positions, which made it possible for those Laker teams to get away with a pretty shallow bench. Coop probably would've been the harder player to replace.


Yeah, I value Coop a ton because of that ability to defend 3 positions at a high level. Defensive player of the year in '87. Having a guy like that you can throw in to stop or put out a fire at a number of positions is just huge for your bench. Even though he was backup PG, it also fits in well with Magic since you didn't have to rely on Magic covering the smaller PGs defensively. So I got to go with Coop. And I was a huge BScott fan.

Plus, you had the Coop-a-loop and could yell "Cooooooooooo."


I've been doing a lot of early 80s recaps and thus being forced to take a fresh look at full games. It's surprising how much Coop and Wilkes both banged under the glass for rebounds and putbacks then. We rebounded by committee. It was in some cases sad that we had to rely on twigs to do that job against teams with behemoths like Billy Paultz and James Donaldson, but they did it. Coop fared better against the Chowdahs than younger Scott. Age not Scott's fault, but in the biggest battles of the decade Byron was hit or miss, especially at Bwostin. The 84 team w/ Byron as a rookie wasn't as good as the 83 team with Norm imo. Norm was a better player at the point of the trade, it took Scott a few years to come to fruition. Norm was a helluva player, btw. Absolutely deadeye from inside the arc, very "forgotten" now. Not that far from Magic back then than he looked by the end of Earv's career. For that matter James didn't blow past Jamaal immediately.
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2020 5:07 pm    Post subject:

activeverb wrote:
spflakers wrote:

People picking Cooper either weren't wathing games then, are being overly emotional towards Coop, or have sullied thoughts of Scott because of his coaching stint here.


I don't think that's it.

Generally, I would say most people rank Cooper over Byron because Cooper is one of the best defenders in NBA history.

He won two DPoY awards, made 8 all-defensive teams, and even got a few votes for MVP a couple of years.

Also, he was on 5 ring teams compared to Byron's 3.

Byron was a better scorer, who lead the league in third-point shooting one year. Very solid all around player who never received any postseason honors.

I can see someone choosing Byron, but I believe that's a minority perspective. And it's based on respect for Cooper's defense, not on emotions.


I agree.....

Joe said the quoted part here.

This whole thread -- and, uh, the fact there's no sports so what else am i going to do -- has had me thinking about the whole Showtime era (again, which is a weekly thing during non pandemic times so I guess it's not really that different). But just how the parts all fit so nicely together. Norm was fantastic and obviously wins two titles but him leaving also opened the door for Magic to fully be Magic. Coop and Byron bringing unique skills to the table; Worthy being such a gorgeous finisher and getting paired with the best guy ever in dishing on the break; Wilkes being great and then when he gets sick/injured Worthy's right there. Bangers like Rambis and even Minnesota great Landsberger, followed by A.C. stepping seamlessly in. All built to run, except for the center. Who happened to own the best halfcourt weapon in NBA history. Bench guys like 'Doo and then Thompson accepting their roles and filling them perfectly.

That's it, I'm gonna do something really different right now and go watch some Showtime vids. And NPZ, hadn't checked you in a week or so and just did and see you've been digging in the vault! Headed in now.
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2020 9:46 pm    Post subject:

spflakers wrote:


That's it, I'm gonna do something really different right now and go watch some Showtime vids. And NPZ, hadn't checked you in a week or so and just did and see you've been digging in the vault! Headed in now.


I got more and stuff that's already done, but I'm pacing like 2020 Brawn. Veterans know how to pace. I did Gm 3 of that 81 miniseries that we lost. I don't think that's ever been re-aired or even put on YT. Don't think any of the other pukes out there has it. Wanna de-bunk that "play was drawn up for Kareem only" thing. Westhead was vaguer than hell. I dunno what he was asking Magic to do if Magic even did. Some of the late game huddles were mic'd and filmed. I wrote in the video description that I wish we had the version of Del Harris that coached that day (we were later coached by not only HOU's coach, but the guy who hit the go-ahead basket in Dunleavy and the guy who airballed the final shot in Magic). Earv's worst playoff game ever tho, that's without a doubt. He was chosen by the media to wear the goat horns after that one.

You like that Sixer game? What have been your faves? We'll have none of that Terminator "All..." stuff. I need concrete hottakes here.
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2020 6:47 pm    Post subject:

*Emerges like Denzel from the vault in Inside Man, trying to sort out everything that I've just seen*

All right, NPZ, you asked for it, now you're going to get way too many words. This could be a private message but what the heck, we don't have anything else going on so other folks can read. Please note this goes off the Byron-Coop topic of the thread but, again, we don't have anything else to write about so here goes.

Go to NPZ's page to see the videos discussed, recent additions unearthed from his vault, focused on the 81-82 and 82-83 seasons.

https://www.youtube.com/user/nonplayerzealot4/videos

First it's very hard for me to rate any of the losses above any of the wins, even if the losses were better games or more exciting or memorable. It's like, Game 4 of the 1984 Finals was objectively one of the greatest games in Lakers history. But there's no way I'd subjectively put it in the top 500 of greatest Lakers games.

So my favorites of the new batch are probably, in order: Lakers-Sixers; Lakers-Clippers (not the one when Mitch gets hurt, the newer one); Nuggets victory on road.

Of the losses, the rankings on those for me would be: 1. Bucks at Forum, Sidney at buzzer. 2. Warriors loss at GSW; 3. Losing at MSG.

Random thoughts on whole batch:
* What I've always loved about your videos and continue to love with this new series is you feature the opposition just as much as the Lakers. Gives us a chance to see the greats from the other teams doing their thing, even if it's at the expense of our boys. It's the complete opposite of a cousin of mine, who used to film his kid's basketball games....only when his kid was playing. And other compilations online will sometimes just give us one side of the picture. NPZ gives us the whole show.

* I think if people watch this the main things that will emerge, whether seeing these types of games for first time or revisiting them like me, is a deeper appreciation for Wilkes and Nixon. Wow! Just in their absolute primes here. Norm on the midrange is seriously in these games Jordanesque or Kobe-like. And an awkward-looking J at times, floating to the side or one leg kicking out a bit, but just absolute money. Then you've got him on the break, either leading it or finishing. The quick hands causing problems on defense. Just an all-around maestro. Like I noted in previous post here, I liked Byron trade because it freed Magic to fully become Magic but when you watch these games you absolutely understand why the Lakers went to three titles and won two in a four-year span with Norman. And Wilkes...how many times in these few games did we hear Chick say "20-foot layup" or "19-foot layup"? And he would just drain them over and over again. In one of the games Keith and Chick talk about Wilkes being best guy in the league without the ball and hard to argue when watching these. How many times does he find a crease or slip free from a defender so Magic or Nixon or Kareem find him underneath the hoop. And he's a great finisher on the break on that wing. Maybe not what Worthy was in his prime but filled it beautifully and always finished, even if it wasn't with a statue of liberty dunk. And sneaky good on the boards, again sliding in there unnoticed, snagging big boards and smoothly laying them back in.

* The road games, it's fun seeing those old arenas. So many places these days look the same (in the same way every NCAA tourney game looks the same now because the make the floors uniform or play everything at the end in domes). The Mecca was my personal favorite. So funky. Chicago Stadium on the other hand was just depressing as hell pre-Jordan.

* Interesting seeing Magic's offensive game in these videos. It's so different than the 87-91 version, though the full-court drives are still sensationally the same. But otherwise, you could almost call him a rich-man's Cedric Ceballos. He just picks up points here and there and eventually is going to end up with at least 18 but sometimes 25 and sometimes 30-plus. Occasional jump shot but lots of offensive boards, or just collecting passes while he's down low and throwing up little flip shots, the occasional hook.

--Another way Magic scored a lot? The give and go with Kareem. One of the great Laker plays of that entire decade. Dump it to Kareem on the block, go to the bucket, get the dish, score. Kareem's not known for being a Walton-level big man when it comes to passing but god could he make that play over and over again, to Magic, Wilkes, Rambis, Nixon, whoever, often threading the needle.

-There is a mind-numbing quality to Kareem's greatness. Swing left shoot right. Lefty hook. Once, twice, three times. It can become easy to take his greatness for granted but that should never be done. In these videos he's already 34/35 years old and yet utterly dominant. And not just with the hook. Full variety of shots in these games, specifically the Phoenix game. Turnarounds, fadeaways, jump shots, filling the lane on the break like Worthy, just the perfect 7-foot-2 scoring machine. If you think he was all hooks definitely watch that game especially.

-The fastbreak is so good here. And it wasn't just about the athletes. It was a mindset. I wonder how much of it had to do in these '82 games with the players being free of Westhead. But it's just the attitude of we are going to run at any moment and you can't stop us. Off rebounds, steals, made baskets, just relentless.

--Some real ghosts of the '80s here and what-ifs. Michael Ray Richardson killing it with the Knicks. Bernard King on a Warriors team that was not long for this world. David Thompson making appearances with a couple of teams.

Thoughts on certain games:

Clippers (non Mitch injury game). Wow. What a Clips roster! The best part of this game might be seeing Walton actually playing. At one point Chick says he came their in 79 and had played 14 games! But in this one he looks spry, making some nice moves around Kareem, showing off his unique passing skills, drilling jumpers, blocking shots. As the kids would say, Bill Walton was a problem...until he'd break six more bones in his feet. So many fascinating names on the team: Young Tom Chambers, hair flowing, scoring from all over. Rookie Terry Cummings just dominating with his chiseled body and refined game. Chick says in a game earlier he'd put up 32-24 against Indiana. This was only like the 15th game of the year and already T.C. had a game like that. Craig Hodges. Randy Smith. Lionel Hollins. Magic comes out aggressive, earning comments from Chick and Keith. It's almost like he was Kobe in this game where you didn't know if he was going to shoot or pass, one of those weird Kobe outings. Which almost never happened with Magic. He usually blended the two together perfectly but here they really noticed that he looked for his shot and he scores 30-plus. Cummings not the only rookie making noise as Worthy shows flashes and some swoops, including on a Kareem outlet and sweet lefty statue of liberty dunk. A theme in these games is awful end-of-game decision making. In this one Cummings gets the ball with a great chance to launch the game-winner....and passes it off as the buzzer goes off.

--Sixers game. What a battle and what a fun game! Finals preview and both teams approach it like the playoffs. No one phoning it in. First...Chick on the PA! What? What was that about, NPZ, or was that normal thing? Big ovation for Dr. J, showing his league-wide popularity and then he thrills early with a rejection of Nixon. HORRIFIC call at 7:04 mark of this video as a traveling call is made on Eddie Jordan. Chick rips Tommy Nunez. It was a Euro step 30 years early called for traveling. Throughout these games some awful reffing, especially on goaltending. Just totally bizarre calls. Another guy people might be surprised in these videos? Rambis. Showing skills, filling the lane, battling on the boards of course, some great touch passes. Not just a bruiser, was a lot more. There's a Wilkes pass here Chick calls the best of his career and I don't think it's an exaggeration, a crazy no-look behind the head pass, the type that Magic did to Nixon in the '80 Finals that you see once in a while. There's a point where Kareem does a bit of dribbling and dishes to Magic who blows the layup. Chick mentions how the crowd would have exploded. The Forum LOVED Kareem doing anything out of the ordinary. The drive and dunk vs. Suns in '87; the drive and hook in '85 Finals, maybe Game 3. Andrew Toney is awesome in this game. Not just a Boston killer. The final minute of regulation is outstanding: Julius with gorgeous drive, Kareem who dominates all day tosses in a hook, Toney gives them the lead. Then Kareem gets fouled with couple of seconds, down two. Similar to Game 6 of '88 Finals. Kareem wasn't greatest FT shooter but I liked him in the clutch. And he makes both of these. (and I do think it was a foul on Bobby Jones). These videos are just filled with classic "That's right" lines from Keith when replying to Chick but at buzzer Toney misses a shot and Keith sort of questions Chick's call as he thought the ball might bounce in after Chick said no and he responds with "You stick with Golden Throat and we'll be all right." Keith, just agree. Lakers win in double OT. And The Forum crowd was alive in this one, like it used to regularly get in the '80s.

-Phoenix loss. Maurice Lucas! Also kills LA in the Knicks game in this package. Portly Luke, still tough as hell and showing some sweet moves. Young Larry Nance flying around...would have looked so good in purple and gold. (On one of the vids NPZ says Mike McGee, drafted ahead of Nance, reminds him of Tony Smith and I couldn't stop chuckling).

--The Bucks loss at The Forum. Great game. Moncrief shows maybe Lakers made mistake drafting Magic number one few years earlier by winning it at the buzzer. And great game from Marques Johnson. The Bucks game on the road was notable for...how cold it was outside. Like 30 below and Chick blames the shooting on the cold arena and hard ball. And I actually agree! It is hard shooting in the cold. Also Chick broadcasts while wearing a stocking cap.

--Win at the Jazz. Uh, why are both teams wearing dark unis?! Also has every game at Utah been the same for like the past 40 years? Just an awful and tough place to play. Dantley gets his points here as always but Lakers get the W. You really see Speedy Magic here, as well as Kareem taking it to Danny Schayes, few years before their playoff brawl. And the Utah crowd is hard on young Daniel.

-Loss at Warriors. Awful, awful, awful foul call at the buzzer costs Lakers the game. Fun game though against that explosive Warriors team.

-Win at Sonics. Another fun one, damn. Sikma and Gus Williams showing their skills but the break was just too devastating in this one. And raw Worthy again showing flashes of what was to come. Not quite the low-post maestro we'd see eventually but raw power and smoothness already there.

-Bulls loss. Artis Gilmore looks gigantic in this. And also plays big. Theus with a really nice game. Like NPZ says in the description, a Jerry Sloan-coached game. One thing that caught my ear. Kareem getting mad, as Chick pointed out. You did not want to get Kareem mad. Ask Kent Benson, and many others over the years who thought they could hit the Captain in the face or the ribs or the goggles and get away with it. He doesn't snap in this one but I feel like Chick was ready for it if it did happen.

--Knicks loss at Garden in OT. Wilkes with a great tying shot. Watch it and see if it doesn't remind you of Kobe's famous one against Toronto in 2013. Wilkes catches, fakes, calmly drains it. Also, the 3-point line on the MSG court is basically invisible! Incredible. It's like a yellow paint used to match the floor. Some fun early Bill Cartwright highlights. If you only know him as the man who annoyed Michael Jordan with his bad hands, check out these highlights. Hooks, drives, jumpers, total package.

--Nuggets win. So another bizarre ending. In the loss at Blazers in this package, which came near end of Westhead era, Lakers don't foul in the final 10 seconds when down 2. Inexplicably. Well, here the Nuggets do the same thing down 1. Although they looked like they sort of tried but didn't get the call. In the same way every game at Utah has been the same for 40 years so has every game at Denver. You're going to run and you might get run off the court but you're also going to score a ton of points and more often than not a good Lakers team will win there, even when it's tough. English is fantastic here with his unique midrange game and I love watching Issel, who would have been great in today's game. But if you think Kareem couldn't handle modern centers playing on the outside, watch him here. He chases Issel around and yeah gets beat a few times but also utterly abuses him on the other end. Same thing would happen today. Lakers take lead on an insane Magic pass to Wilkes, a play that was simply another day at work for him.

Like I said, way too many words on these games but they deserve it. Thanks so much, NPZ, for truly being the best there is at what you do. (Cue Dodge Truck solemn coronavirus commercial voice) Today, more than ever, in these difficult times, us Laker fans appreciate it and all the work that goes into them.
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2020 7:38 pm    Post subject:

OMFG. Dayum. Gimme a bit to peruse this Wonderwall of hoops knowledge, SF.
====

Gotta say that my takeaways were also precisely like yours re: Norm, Jamaal, and Kareem and I've made mention of that in my vid descriptions and comments to others. Norm back then was a guaranteed deuce 8 out of 10 times. It's also evident that Magic peaked later than Bird, hence Larry getting 3 MVPs in a row. Earv was surprisingly a lot more meat and potatoes for his first 5-6 years. You don't see the waves of no-look passes in these that you start seeing in 87 games onward. He would mostly hit mates who made their way to rim level off the ball. The other thing is that it was weird how much Jamaal and Coop banged the glass. They were both slivers and it was absurd seeing them battle against a team with big, poorly conditioned 4s and 5s of the day. Kareem in those days was tantamount to Shaq.

Fans don't realize it because we're 40 yrs removed, but he was a monster that only Moses Malone could contain, and that was only some of the time. When you think of his offense, you think of swing left, shoot right skyhooks on the baseline. It was clear that he actively sought that area out and as soon as he got it, he would do the routine quick before the D came and hit the hooks invariably. Teams that could throw a guard to block off his rhythm for that shot and make him go to option B were often successful. However, he was hitting fallbacks and perimeter bankers back then that were a LOT more accurate than they were when he was old bald Cap in the late 80s. In 97/98, the Jazz played Shaq like smart teams w/ big Cs played Cap. They both would start posting and a guard or F (often Malone) would buzz in and strip or hack him. Key was to take away as many of those 99 percent score areas that they could.
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2020 8:14 pm    Post subject:

I liked the MECCA as a venue. It had WOODEN benches for the players instead of chairs. This was all they way up to 88. Richfield Coliseum had that as well, plus individual seats segregated by wooden paneling. Sofa seats for VIPs to sit in their own spaces while watching Jordan kill them.

You gotta read my vid descriptions, ace. I usually spell out any weird things. The Sixer game was shifted from the PPV channel the Lakers were using then called ON TV to KHJ-9, and Chick/Keith actually sat at the scorer's table at The Forum. They did that because it was a special game. Boston games were both CBS so no Chick, unfort. Bill Russell babble instead. Horrendous color commentator, marble mouth, no enunciation at all. Jazz wore green that day due to it being St. Pat's Day. Yer right at awful reffing. Man, I see absolute DOGsh calls over and over in these games and I'm more than happy to include them to show the fans that the refs then were often hacks, save for Earl Strom. "That's right, Chick" was Keith and Stu's profession. I got a vid of Riles returning to The Forum in 91 for the first time since he left and he and Stu and Chick did a halftime interview where Pat said, "And Stu's doing a great job with, 'THAT'S! RIGHT!, CHICK!" and they all laughed. You know how Stu chuckles. Mike McGee over Nance is killer. Talk about missing out. That's 1 title at least back to us. Javale McGee is more important to us than Mike McGee. Hell, CHRIS McGee might be more important...maybe. RE: Kareem's anger, I've seen him react to fouls when he was 40+ in 1989! He got fouled by Larry Krystowiak and pushed him and Chick screamed, "NO!, Kareem, he didn't mean it!" Ralph Sampson, to whom Kareem was cool, elbowed him and he sat on the floor and visibly sulked and looked as pissed as he did vs Bentson. He got up and was elbowing into faces the next two trips downcourt. Manute Bol got a whiffer and then he got Sampson in the jaw and they got into each other. Chick said, "Kareem is mad! And you don't wanna see him mad! Let's keep an eye on this, Stu..." The Doug Moe Nuggets had ZE-RO plays, yes, really. They had a bunch of talented offensive types and each dude from the bench was a slightly lesser version of the guy they replaced. They battled Boston and Utah for the most white guys on a team.

Aight, SF. That was great stuff, glad you liked. Working on more right now. Got a vid going as I type. Keep checkin, lata! PIECE!
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2020 8:35 pm    Post subject:

Only you would be reminiscing about sofas at Richfield.

We need to conduct a psychological study on how much of Stu's now-instinctual contrarianism is PTSD from having to agree with everything Chick said. "That's right, Chick," is now, "That's wrong, Bill!"

Great point on Bird peaking quicker in the NBA game and a lot of it is probably due to him literally being three years older, having spent five years out of high school before playing in the NBA while Magic had just the two years. And it is kind of remarkable the transformation that took place where now I think many NBA observers will put Magic ahead of Bird on all-time rankings. In 1986 SI had Bird on the cover asking if he was the best player ever and basically saying yes. He followed that by basically being even better in 1987 and 1988! But of course '87 is Magic's MVP year, 88 Jordan, then the injuries hit and then Magic goes on to win two more while Larry limps in. Still, even in 1990 he put up 24-9-7! Yet the end of their careers has kind of allowed Magic to slide past Larry in the eyes of many. It's why I don't get upset if someone would put Larry above Magic....though I would of course disagree.

That Nuggets description....dying.

Also loved seeing Moe and Layden flailing in these losses. Was always so satisfying to see coaches who loathed the Lakers losing close ones or being screwed by the LA conspiracy. Adelman obviously another one of these, from Portland to Sactown to Houston. At one point Layden, pushing like 350 here by the looks, looks extremely nimble on the sideline while complaining about a call.

A Chick thing: as I was watching these, my wife was reading next to me and at one point Chick just throws in the fact that I think Magic had just gotten a haircut. "Did he just say that while the play was going on?" My wife is South African, ZERO basketball knowledge. None. So I chuckled and was like, yeah. Then later he says something like, "He took an 8 footer and shot it 4" and she asked if "that guy always throws in little facts during the game." I said actually yes (and also tried describing the concept of the simulcast, which, well, just proved confusing to all of us). I mean this is the guy who on Magic's hook against the Celtics took the time to throw in the parenthetical "down the middle, just as I thought" AS Magic is dribbling and before takes the shot and then still has breath to describe the actual shot. Legend.

Also love how early in I think the 82-83 games Chick is talking a few times about how KAreem is shooting the skyhook as well as he's ever seen him. And when Chick said something like that you knew it was true.
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PostPosted: Thu May 07, 2020 8:23 pm    Post subject:

spflakers wrote:


Also love how early in I think the 82-83 games Chick is talking a few times about how KAreem is shooting the skyhook as well as he's ever seen him. And when Chick said something like that you knew it was true.


In that Clips gm with Walton, he says, "His skyhook is deadleeey.....like a cobraaa..." I also got a full, "went down the smokestack of the freighter" on his kamikaze steal quip. One of the only times I've heard him say the full line, not just and he went down the smokestack. By the 90s it was just cut down to kamikaze steal. His claim that Worthy's mum gave him the Jell-O's jigglin and the rest is proven. He just said the game is in the fridge before Worthy got there and it morphed into all the other stuff after he had this fateful talk with Mrs. W. I gotta date the earliest game I can find with Jell-O.
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PostPosted: Fri May 08, 2020 8:47 am    Post subject:

non-player zealot wrote:
Kareem in those days was tantamount to Shaq.



Kareem was as impactful as Shaq, but in a completely different way. Kareem was a finesse player who hated contact, while Shaq invited it.

Guys with limited skills who would get physical infuriated Kareem. That's one reason he famously punched Kent Benson. The NBA style of play during the threepeat years would have exasperated Kareem.
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PostPosted: Fri May 08, 2020 9:40 am    Post subject:

Joe Pesci wrote:
Why, when they played the same position, did Riley play Scott more minutes than Cooper?


I've never heard Riley said why.

I don't know if he thought Byron was better, or he just liked Cooper's energy off the bench.

That was an era of superteams with deep rosters. You'd see 6th man, who played less minutes than the starters, to make all-star teams.

And the gap in their minutes was really significant until after Cooper turned 30. So I don't what that means, if anything.
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PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2020 5:57 am    Post subject:

activeverb wrote:
Joe Pesci wrote:
Why, when they played the same position, did Riley play Scott more minutes than Cooper?


I've never heard Riley said why.

I don't know if he thought Byron was better, or he just liked Cooper's energy off the bench.

That was an era of superteams with deep rosters. You'd see 6th man, who played less minutes than the starters, to make all-star teams.

And the gap in their minutes was really significant until after Cooper turned 30. So I don't what that means, if anything.


To me, Scott was a better fit with the starters. His stellar shooting and finishing were perfect for the spacing on the half court set and the fast break, respectively. Cooper needed to lead the second unit because he was the only other ball handler on the team. Like Dunleavy said, Bryon couldn’t even p*ss with his left hand (and not pass)
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