LAKERS -at- THUNDER – 2-24-17 - Thoughts and :-(( Ratings

 
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DancingBarry
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2017 8:29 pm    Post subject: LAKERS -at- THUNDER – 2-24-17 - Thoughts and :-(( Ratings

The Coup d’etat… Oh, Los Angeles. I do love you. Your glamor, beaches and Hollywood façade can’t always contain your dark side.

The carnage came swiftly, but not without a long, drawn out setup. Tuesday morning there were rumors shortly before the announcement. Then all hell broke loose as the media got a hold of it. Mitch Kupchak, John Black and Jim Buss all relieved of their duties. Magic Johnson and Jeanie Buss in charge.

This had been brewing for a while. The timely hit pieces dropped in the press and during free agency in the past couple years – these were all calculated.

Certainly Cersei Lannister from Game of Thrones might have been proud of Jeanie’s coup to seize control of basketball operations from Jim. It was quick and blunt. That family atmosphere, the one focused on honor and a tradition to take care of their own? Forget about it. All that remained was sweeping up the chalk outlines. Bye, Mitch. Bye, John. Step aside, Jim. Brutal.

The Lakers then traded Lou Williams for a draft pick and moved all in on the tank. Err, developing the youth.

Speaking of which, that youth returned to the floor tonight against the Thunder and got that development time. Russell, Ingram, Zubac and Clarkson all with good run. It wasn’t so much as Westbrook that killed them this game as it was guys like Roberson and Abrines with 19 points each (certainly Westbrook plays a role in all of that). But keep those guys into single digits and hit your freethrows and you’ve got a chance.

The Laker youngsters? Most of them scored in double digits tonight with Russell leading the way with 29 in the 110-93 loss. They competed and put in an honest effort. Much better than the last time we saw this team.

After All Star break, this is probably what you want to see. Competitive game, but taking your losses and increasing odds to keep your future picks.


Russell -- -- With Lou out, we got Russell one of those rare 36-minute games. Don’t listen to the criticism by Worthy/Fisher saying Russell didn’t move the ball, he did and did it pretty well. “There was a lot of clips we’re going to show on film tomorrow where we were just moving the ball to the next open guy,” Luke said. “We didn’t make those shots at the end of those possessions but they were wide open shots. That’s what we need to get to.” That 1-9 from Nick and 4-12 from Ingram certainly cost him a lot of assist opportunities. Russell could have reeled in a few of those missed threes (a heat-check brick, settling for a three on a mismatch instead of attacking, etc.). So shot selection could have been better, but it wasn’t a selfish game. Very good mix of scoring and passing from him. This is more in line with what you want – aggressive on offense, but always looking for and finding teammates. Defensively, some great reads on help D by our guards tonight and some good hands by Russell at times. He had 4 steals and the team was competing and fighting throughout the game. Luke liked their D on Westbrook (who still put up great numbers, but ended up with 4-18 shooting). I’m hoping these are the minutes he gets from here out. No reason not to. The Stats: He scored 29 points on 12-26 shooting (3-12 from three, 2-3 from the line) to go with 4 boards, 6 assists, 4 turnvoers, 4 steals and 2 fouls in 35:34. He was a -19. The Action: He swished a pull-up wing jumper on iso. He missed a corner three in early offense. He missed a catch-and-shoot three. Poor job in transition D to give up a layup off a missed FT. He hit Zubac off the two-man game for the floater. He found Nick cross-court in the corner for a three. He stripped Westbtrook on iso D. He kicked to Ingram for a three. His pocket pass was picked off. He swiped the ball on the perimeter and scored a layup between two defenders on the break. He missed a wing three off a kickout. He got tapped on a three on Randle’s between-the-legs pass. He kicked a dribble trying to snake through the D. He attacked in early offense and scored the layup with a soft touch. He hit Nance for a floater off the two-man game. He missed a wing pull-up off the two-man game. He sank a corner three on a kickout in transition. Clarkson shoveled a loose ball to him on the break for the layup. He had 11 points on 5-11 shooting and 3 boards. Second Half: He sank a pull-up 18-footer off the screen. His pass was deflected, turnover. He scooped up a pass on the break and swished the wing three. Great read to jump a passing lane, but he was rejected on the layup on the other end (I think he and Luke wanted the foul). He sank a tough three coming off the high screen. Heat-check three next time down, way off (too far out). He missed a tough three up against the shotclock. He missed a corner three getting knocked down with no call. Great change of pace on an off-ball cut and Nance hit him down the middle of the lane for FTs, he made both. He scored a layup filling the lane on the break with Clarkson. He missed a wing three (should have attacked the mismatch on that one). Good job hustling down court to fill the lane and Clarkson found him for the transition layup. He choked a layup after gathering a loose ball. He attacked right, went behind his back to change directions and banked in the And-1, he missed the FT. Right idea, but off the mark to a cutting Clarkson, dunk the other way. He was blocked on a drive. He got a switch, blew past him and scored a layup. Wide left on a pull-up three on our final possession.

Randle -- -- Double-double for Julius. “We missed a lot of open shots today,” Randle said, but added, “I like a lot of the stuff we did today.” He wants to set hard screens and be very active. Doing that consistently would take his game up another notch. Some missed rotations again, but he had good energy on the glass and changing ends. Offensively, I don’t think we run a single thing for him. He just creates within our schemes and gets a few points being strong and active around the rim. The Stats: He scored 13 points on 6-12 shooting (0-1 from three, 1-2 from the line) to go with 11 boards, 3 assists, 1 turnover, 1 steal and 5 fouls in 29 minutes. He was a -17. The Action: He airballed a step-back three. He scooped up a loose ball and hit the 5-footer. He missed a fade over Westbrook in the post. He overpowered Gibson in the post and drew FTs, he made one. He pushed out the break and hit Clarkson for three. He missed a fade in the lane. He attacked the chest of the defender and hit the runner. He couldn’t finish in transition shortly later. He lost the handle on the two-man sequence, turnover. Second Half: He sank a jumphook off the two-man sequence with Ingram. He missed a step-back in the lane on iso. He attacked, missed, got it back and was blocked. He cleaned up a missed Zubac finish at the rim. He battled for a board, pushed it out and scored a layup. He scored a layup on the drive and dish from Clarkson.

Ingram -- -- Some flashes in this game (that lob through a couple of defenders to start the fourth, especially). He hit his first three in this one, but missed his next four. Some poor FT shooting as well, making just one of his first four early in the game. That seemed to be contagious for everyone else. A good mix of attacking the rim and shooting from range. We just need more of those perimeter shots to fall. Defensively, he was involved in the dagger three late in the fourth not recovering to his man well after a help sequence. Magic mentioned during the game, he talked to Ingram about getting more contact when he drives. The Stats: He scored 11 points on 4-12 shooting (1-5 from three, 2-5 from the line) to go with 5 boards, 4 assists, 1 turnover, 1 steal and 3 fouls in 39 minutes. He was a -23. The Action: Strong attack to his right off the handoff and he was fouled on the finish at the rim, he made one FT. Off the mark on a pass to Black off the two-man game, turnover. He drew FTs out on the break, he missed both. He threw it up for Zubac to finish off the two-man game. He swished a sideline three off the kickout from Russell. He posted up and missed the short one. He got backdoored for a score. He attacked across the lane and hit the short one with a soft touch. He curled into the lane on the drive but couldn’t finish. He missed a wing three in transition. He attacked left and scored a layup under the arms of the defender with his right. Second Half: He hit Randle for a jumphook. He missed a sideline three on a kickout. He was fouled before an inbounds pass for an FT, he made this one. He missed a sideline three. He missed a forced jumper in the post. He missed a layup on a drive in transition. He crammed down a lob between two defenders to start the fourth quarter. Bad recognition not recovering to his man after tagging the roll man and he gave up a huge three. He missed a sideline three.

Black -- -- Foul-prone game got him off to a bad start and he wasn’t a factor in this one. Zubac and Nance were pretty active, so that also limited his time. The Stats: He didn’t score on 0-1 shooting to go with 1 board, 1 turnover, 2 blocks and 2 fouls in 13 minutes. He was a -15. The Action: Two quick fouls on the offensive end after 3 minutes and he sat shortly later. He blocked a drive. He threw an interior pass away. He picked up his third foul and had to sit. Second Half: He couldn’t finish a layup off the two-man sequence.

Young -- -- Not a good game from him. The past few days may have been tiring. He said they definitely felt Magic’s presence having him around. He’s still here. Some weak D, ball watching early on and a whole lot of clanking from three in the first quarter. Off some great looks, too. He said he was a little rusty from not playing. “Going to New Orleans was pretty good, coming back to not knowing where you’re not going to be was kind of different,” Nick said. He said everyone was checking their phones on the plane at the trade deadline. Nick thought he was going to Houston. The Stats: He scored 3 points on 1-9 shooting (1-8 from three) to go with 5 boards, 2 steals and 1 foul in 20 minutes. He was a -18. The Action: He missed a wing three off some great ball movement. He missed a three up against the shotclock. He gave up a back door lob dunk. He sank a corner three off the skip pass from Russell. He missed an open three in transition. He missed an open corner three on a kickout. He missed a forced corner three. Second Half: He missed a pull-up at the FT line. Not close on a chuck from three. He missed an open wing three.

Clarkson -- -- I liked the active hands of our guards tonight, Clarkson especially. He and Russell combined for 8 steals. That helped them get out on the break and get some easy ones. With no Lou out there, it will be interesting to see how Clarkson settles in. He and Russell had been developing some chemistry last year playing together. They’re getting more minutes together now, so we will see if that returns. Luke left one of them on the floor at all times. Offensively, Clarkson struggled like everyone else from three. He also couldn’t connect from midrange on some good looks. He picked up a bunch of his assists in transition making the right play. The Stats: He scored 14 points on 6-17 shooting (2-8 from three, 0-2 from the line) to go with 5 boards, 5 assists, 3 turnovers, 4 steals and 1 foul in 29 minutes. He was a +1. The Action: He missed a wing three, we got it back to him and he missed the drive. He missed a pull-up three at the buzzer, fading left. He attacked and was fouled for FTs, he missed both. He cut off Zubac’s post, took the pass and scored the layup. He drained a step-back wing three. He slithered through the D and missed a layup. He missed a wing three just beating the shotclock. He outlet to Brewer off a steal for a dunk. He sank a corner three on a transition kickout. He airballed a scoop on a drive and traveled after picking it up. He chased down a loose ball and shoveled it to Russell on the break. He had 8 points on 3-9 shooting. Second Half: He missed an open elbow pull-up. He missed a three in transition, we got it back to him and he blew past his man to the left and scored a layup. Back-to-back pass deflections by him. On the second one of those he took it for a layup in transition, sealing his man well with his body on the finish. He ball-faked and hit the floater on the drive. He beat his man to a loose ball, pushed it out and hit Deng for the score. He lost the handle in transition, turnover. He missed an elbow jumper short. He hit Russell filling the lane on the break. He pushed it out and hit Russell filling the lane again to cut it to 9. He attacked down the paint and wrapped the pass around the defender to Randle for a layup. He missed a three. He missed a good look at a three straight away. He attacked, got caught in the air and threw it away.

Nance -- -- Great job tipping out or tracking down offensive boards. That kind of energy is something you want from him with more consistency. We talk about the importance of that with Randle, but Nance has so much athleticism that we need to see him impose that on the game more like this. He made it tough on the offensive glass for the opponents and he was going after shots in the paint or deflecting passes. Again, one of those really good low-scoring games from him. No reason we can’t see more of that from him with his tools. The Stats: He scored 4 points on 2-4 shooting to go with 12 boards (6 offensive), 2 assists, 2 turnovers, 2 steals, 3 blocks and 2 fouls in 25:27. He was a -4. The Action: He sank a quick-fire 21-footer, no hesitation in early offense. Great job giving the Lakers multiple possession on a trip down the floor (we still couldn’t score). He swiped a pass on a rotation, gave it up to Deng on the break, who missed, then Larry got it back and found him for the layup. He rejected Kanter out of bounds on the help D. He swished a floater off the two-man game. He missed an elbow jumper. Second Half: He hit Russell down the middle of the lane for FTs. Great job tying up a man on the defensive end to prevent him from rising up under the hoop (he then won the jump). Nice high-low to Zubac for the score. He threw a pass away instead of trying to finish at the rim, dunk the other way. Quick off the ground and he rejected Westbrook. He missed an open baseline jumper on the other end. He rejected a layup attempt.

Zubac -- -- Liked this game from him for a variety of reasons. Defensively against Kanter, he did a great job. “He made some real good progress as he got more comfortable out there,” Luke said, mentioning they challenged him to defend Kanter who’s tough in the post and has killed us at times this year. Zu held his own and sent Kanter packing a few times. He had a little more difficulty with Gibson in the post, who was able to get into Zubac’s body and elevate around him. When Ivica gets stronger that’s going to be a lot tougher to do to him. Offensively, good job in this game keeping the ball high whenever he got a pass near the rim. Just such strong fundamentals. The Stats: He scored 11 points on 5-9 shooting (1-2 from the line) to go with 6 boards, 1 assist, 1 turnover, 1 steal, 3 blocks and 1 foul in 27 minutes. He was a +2. The Action: He swished the floater off the two-man game with Russell. He finished a lob from Ingram off the two-man game. He missed an 18-footer. He backed his man down then hit a cutting Clarkson for the score. He tipped in a Clarkson missed drive. He swished the 16-footer off the inverse play. He missed an open baseline jumper. He had 8 points on 4-6 shooting. Second Half: He missed a short one in the paint. Excellent recovery to block his man after Randle missed a tag on help D. He was blocked on a dunk, but Randle cleaned it up. He blocked Kanter’s layup attempt. He rejected Kanter’s hook. Excellent back screen on Ingram’s man to free him up for the lob dunk. He was fouled on the roll to the hoop, he made one FT. His layup was goaltended off the high-low from Nance.

Deng -- -- He missed a few chippies in this one, but gave some serviceable minutes. We’d often sub him in for Russell and slide Ingram down to SG across Clarkson. I don’t know if that will be the rotation as Luke may have both Ennis and Brewer taking some minutes from Ingram out of the guard spots as the team gets a look at them…possibly some minutes from Deng. I don’t think we can play Ingram 39 minutes all the time. The Stats: He scored 6 points on 3-9 shooting (0-1 from three) to go with 2 boards, 2 assists and 1 foul in 18 minutes. He was a +8. The Action: Straight line attack and he missed, he got it back and missed the wing jumper. He missed a layup on the break, Nance got it back, gave it to him again and he scored. He didn’t hit the floor for the loose ball and gave up an And-1 layup. He kicked out to Russell for the corner three in transition. Second Half: He lobbed to Ingram to start the fourth for the slam. He missed a layup on the break, got it back and finished the second attempt. He missed a wing three off some nice ball movement. He missed an open baseline jumper. He swished the short jumper over his man in the middle of the lane.

Brewer -- -- Just a few minutes for him. “Get a practice in tomorrow. Hopefully, I can play more Sunday,” he said. He said he wants to help the young guys get better and the team improve. I’m hopefully his effort on D and speed in transition will be a little contagious for the young guys. He got his only points on a breakaway dunk. The Stats: He scored 2 points on 1-2 shooting to go with 1 foul in 4 minutes. The Action: He attacked across the lane and missed a layup. He leaked out for a dunk off a Laker steal. Second Half: He did not play in the second half.

Walton -- -- I think Luke’s influence probably went up a few notches with the coup. The front office will rely on his vision for what takes place on the court. The game has changed from Magic’s days, so it’s important for Luke to be able to communicate the skills he needs. I/m hopeful Luke, Magic and Polinka make for a good team along with the Laker scouting staff. The charisma in the front office certainly went up and that had been lacking since we lost Jerry Buss… Black with two early fouls and he sat for Zubac with 7:51 left, Lakers down 4… Nance in for Randle… Clarkson in for Young… Deng in for Russell, Lakers down 5 with 3 minutes left… The Lakers trailed 29-25 after the first quarter… Brewer in to go with Zubac, Nance, Deng and Clarkson… Randle in with Nance bloody… Lakers 1-7 from the FT line… Brief stint for Brewer… Russell back in, playing alongside Clarkson… Down 6, Lakers go with their starters again midway through the quarter… Nance in for Randle… Zubac back in for Black who picked up another foul… Clarkson and Russell to close the quarter. Let’s see if that’s how they end the game… The Lakers trailed 58-51 at the half… Lakers D just not getting stops… Down 19, he sat Black and Young for Clarkson and Zubac… Down 18, Randle out for Nance… Deng in for Russell… The Lakers trailed 86-70 after the first quarter… After 4 minutes, Russell in for Ingram. This would normally have been Lou’s run but now Russell with get minutes to develop… Randle in for Zu and they cut it to 11 midway through the quarter… They cut it to 9 but gave up a dagger three and that ended that…
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JM
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2017 8:38 pm    Post subject:

1st? Thanks for this. Fun watching Zu. As this season progresses I am losing faith in Randall's future: dude cannot shoot and is too short to really dominate inside.
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dcarter4kobe
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2017 8:41 pm    Post subject:

One thing about the Luke comments, Luke was a big voice in brining in Mozgov.
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2017 8:51 pm    Post subject:

dcarter4kobe wrote:
One thing about the Luke comments, Luke was a big voice in brining in Mozgov.


To be fair to Luke, he didn't determine the terms that we gave Moz. Moz at two years is a far different story than Moz at four.
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2017 8:57 pm    Post subject:

Thanks DB
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2017 11:25 pm    Post subject: Re: LAKERS -at- THUNDER – 2-24-17 - Thoughts and :-(( Ratings

DancingBarry wrote:
The Coup d’etat… Oh, Los Angeles. I do love you. Your glamor, beaches and Hollywood façade can’t always contain your dark side.

The carnage came swiftly, but not without a long, drawn out setup. Tuesday morning there were rumors shortly before the announcement. Then all hell broke loose as the media got a hold of it. Mitch Kupchak, John Black and Jim Buss all relieved of their duties. Magic Johnson and Jeanie Buss in charge.

Certainly Cersei Lannister from Game of Thrones might have been proud of Jeanie’s coup to seize control of basketball operations from Jim. It was quick and blunt. That family atmosphere, the one focused on honor and a tradition to take care of their own? Forget about it. All that remained was sweeping up the chalk outlines. Bye, Mitch. Bye, John. Step aside, Jim. Brutal.
The Godfather (Lakers Style)!

Jeanie decided to go in a completely different direction to change the course of the franchise. As shared during Sport Talk Radio - they have an inexperienced President of Basketball Operations and (soon-to-be) GM that have achieved great success in other areas of the basketball era. In the NBA, we have seen great success (Bob Meyers) and failure (Phil Jackson)

"We Live in Interesting Times"

Young players have an opportunity to prove their worth under the watchful eyes of "The Magic Man."

Which ones will show consistencies?

Who HATES to lose

Who will make the other accountable

DLO/JC/Randle have talent and flaws in their games - along with which ones all actually focus on playing D

Which youngsters will impose their will on games

http://www.espn.com/blog/los-angeles/lakers/post/_/id/43672/magic-johnsons-presence-keeping-lakers-on-their-toes


Last edited by A Mad Chinaman on Fri Feb 24, 2017 11:56 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2017 11:34 pm    Post subject:

Thanks for the write up. As always, it was excellent. It's taken me a few days to process what's happened this week, and I'm still trying to make sense of it all.

While Jeanie talks about needing to do this to restore what her father wanted, I am reasonably sure that this wasn't what he had in mind.

A lot of Lakers fans seem to be sold on this fantasy of needing to lose in order to win.

There's already a team in Los Angeles for people who believe their team needs to lose in order to win....it's called the Clippers. And you know how many championships this philosophy has brought them. Or you should.

And while Dr. Buss was very proud of the number of championships the Lakers won under his ownership, he was prouder still of another fact that everyone seems to have forgotten about: that under his ownership the Lakers failed to make the playoffs twice.

The Lakers under Dr. Buss weren't about losing in order to get a top draft pick. They were about winning as many games as possible, whether it ended in a championship or not.

It was a philosphy of winning in order to win. It was a belief that winning games was a habit, just like losing games was a habit.

When they traded players in order to get the draft rights to Kobe (who wasn't a lottery pick, much less a top 3 pick), Buss and West kept Kobe's minutes of play limited that first season. They weren't worried that Rick Fox starting would somehow hinder Kobe's development. the way people now seem to think it was necessary to get rid of Lou Williams in order of Russell and Clarkson to develop.

And Kobe seems to have turned out OK, even if he wasn't the first pick in the draft, and even if his playing time was kept limited.

That's what I've concluded so far. I hope the Lakers do manage to turn things around, and all of our young players bring us multiple championships.

But don't think this is how Dr. Buss would have gone about it.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 1:18 am    Post subject:

Thanks, DB!

Hopefully moving Lou will speed up the development of our guards. Mozg has already been demoted in favour of Zubac.

Magic, your next move must be bringing back Kareem to work with Zubac! Or if Kareem's health does not allow for this, get Hakeem.


Off topic,
I'm still mad at Jeannie. I mean, maybe they were the right moves, but these moves were not the spirit of the Lakers. They used to take care of their own. And Mitch brought so much to the Lakers. I feel really bad for him.
Thus, I'm watching Lakers differently now. Maybe the spirit will return. But My thinking does not match Lakers direction lately.
I'm all with you JIFISH on that:
JIFISH wrote:
It was a philosphy of winning in order to win. It was a belief that winning games was a habit, just like losing games was a habit.

This needs to return fast.
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Lakers depth chart

PG Johnson / Goodrich
SG Bryant / West / Scott
SF Baylor / Worthy / Cooper
PF Mikkelsen / Hairston / McAdoo / Gasol
C Chamberlain / Abdul-Jabbar / O'Neal / Mikan
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 6:09 am    Post subject:

I really think it would help Randle if Luke used him more on the perimeter on defense. I think if he was forced to use his speed and move more it would involve him in the game more.

I really like the way Magic has approached things so far. He plays the top executive role very well but he gets down in the dirt to understand the inner workings of the team so he can figure out what Luke needs.

I think he will help Luke be Luke and shield him a bit as the losing must take a toll even though Luke is so cool.

Jeanie Buss gave herself the best self evaluation when she said she waited too long. I do feel bad for Mitch but I think it was the right move letting him go. We needed a fresh start and he was part of the problem not just in terms of decision making but organizational effectiveness and slowness to recognize that the game had changed.

Love the scouting department and glad they are staying with an enhanced role. The baby Buss boys will now get a chance to grow under Magic and Jeanie I think that is good. They grew the right up the right way.

If the good Lord blesses us and the lotto balls fall right we will get a really good player. With a deep draft the Hou 1st will have a high probability of success. Even if we the lotto balls are not kind to us we can probably get 2 decent prospects with the 1st and 2nd rounder.

I think with the talent we have and the Charisma of Magic we will be able to get a good free agent.

Love Zubac & I think he may have grown another inch. He seems really tall.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 8:05 am    Post subject:

dcarter4kobe wrote:
One thing about the Luke comments, Luke was a big voice in brining in Mozgov.


I can't help but feel like this sentiment is way overstated on LG. Luke saying "yea Mozgov would be nice" when we had no starting caliber centers is a universe away from "yea let's sign Moz for 64mill and 4 guaranteed seasons plus he's good for the kidz."
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 8:15 am    Post subject:

To jifish I would say I see your point but the NBA has changed since Doc Buss was running the team. The Lakers are at a disadvantage when it comes to free agents now. You can make more money staying with your original team than by moving to LA. And endorsement / movie / business opportunities are in every city now, not just LA/NY. Doc Buss would have seen that and changed they way he did business.

Having said that Doc Buss would have never let the cupboard get so bare. He would have gotten something for Pau rather than let him walk away. Doc rarely traded for older players like Nash and would have never traded that much for him. One of Doc's policies was that you did not pay non-stars stars money which is exactly what Jim and Mitch did to Deng and Mozgov.

Enough of stuff not about the game in question. I think some of the players were out to impress Magic at his first game and shot too much (Russell and Ingram) although in Ingram's defense Magic had told him at the previous days practice to be more aggressive and initiate contact rather than wait for it. (Ya always wanna do what the boss tells you to do if you want to keep your job.)

I was disappointed in Black and Randle's effort, especially on the defensive end although Black's effort has been way up or way down depending on the game this year. Randle's defensive effort has been off for parts of every game this year IMO. Loved Randle's effort on the defensive boards though. Team defense really suffers when Randle is playing C.

Loved Zubac and Nance's effort on the defensive end and the issues they caused for OKC in the paint. Both still have a long way to go but I think Magic saw a lot of potential last night. 7 for 13 from the floor and 6 blocks was impressive. I am hoping Magic see's a lot of Kurt Rambis is Nance and decides to keep him. Nance has that X factor IMO that does not show up in the stat sheet but causes they team to play better when he is on the floor.

JC and Swaggy had off shooting nights but I liked that JC did not let that effect him too much on the defensive end. Swaggy did not give his usual effort defensively. IMO he is gone after this year any way. He is going to opt out and someone is going to offer more than the Lakers are going to want to pay. At age 31 this will likely be Nick's last and best shot at a big contract before he retires so his agent is going to push him hard to take the money.

All in all a good night for Magic to evaluate the team. The Spurs will provide another challenge for the Lakers on Sunday and another opportunity to see the players respond to adversity.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 8:48 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB!
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