Lack of depth and role player support on 2000-02 title teams
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madsen35
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 3:05 pm    Post subject: Lack of depth and role player support on 2000-02 title teams

I was looking at the roster of the 2001 title team.
The depth of post players was super weak.
Shaq's backup was Greg Foster. Occasionally Horace Grant would slide to the 5. Mark Madsen and Slava Medvedenko played limited minutes that year as young players.
Horry was pretty good, but not great.

I'm honestly stunned by how thin the Lakers were. Obviously, Shaq played a lot of minutes, so his backup didn't really need to. But a serious injury to Shaq would have spelled disaster.

I feel like the laker dynasty could have been extended in the early 2000s if the bench had been filled out more.

And it wasn't just the post player depth.
In 2003, guys like Fox and Shaw were on their last legs. What did management do? They went out and got... TRACY MURRAY?
Lindsay Hunter was traded for Kareem Rush, which looked like it could be a smart move in order to bring in a young wing player, but it didn't pan out.

Samaki Walker was brought in but we know how that turned out.

I understand that Kobe and Shaq ate up most of the salary cap, and certain players weren't signed because of the belief that they wouldn't fit in the triangle offense. But yeesh, the bench wasn't very good...

I'm not a Mitch hater. He acquired Pau eventually. He got Ariza for pennies. Got Shannon Brown. He made some good moves. But I wonder how in the world he thought the benhh was acceptable from 2001-03.
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 3:28 pm    Post subject:

SHAQ & KOBE was all they needed
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 3:28 pm    Post subject:

We did a bad job of drafting in the early 2000s. The Lakers could've drafted Andrei Kirilenko and Michael Redd, but passed on both.

This is why I don't think Shaq and Kobe could've won more championships past 2004. We were even thinner at that point.

Rick Fox and Horace Grant were done, Horry had left, Shaw had retired, Devean George and Kareem Rush were disappointments and Malone and Payton were on their last legs.

With the level of talent and style of play starting to improve at that time leaguewide, we needed more depth and a third star to emerge, and we had none of that.
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 4:04 pm    Post subject:

slavavov wrote:
We did a bad job of drafting in the early 2000s. The Lakers could've drafted Andrei Kirilenko and Michael Redd, but passed on both.

This is why I don't think Shaq and Kobe could've won more championships past 2004. We were even thinner at that point.

Rick Fox and Horace Grant were done, Horry had left, Shaw had retired, Devean George and Kareem Rush were disappointments and Malone and Payton were on their last legs.

With the level of talent and style of play starting to improve at that time leaguewide, we needed more depth and a third star to emerge, and we had none of that.


Agreed. I think it would have taken another two years to regroup after 2004. And by that time, Shaq would have begun his steep decline.
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 4:15 pm    Post subject:

Another big miss was Carlos Boozer
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 5:40 pm    Post subject: Re: Lack of depth and role player support on 2000-02 title teams

madsen35 wrote:
I was looking at the roster of the 2001 title team.
The depth of post players was super weak.
Shaq's backup was Greg Foster. Occasionally Horace Grant would slide to the 5. Mark Madsen and Slava Medvedenko played limited minutes that year as young players.
Horry was pretty good, but not great.

I'm honestly stunned by how thin the Lakers were. Obviously, Shaq played a lot of minutes, so his backup didn't really need to. But a serious injury to Shaq would have spelled disaster.

I feel like the laker dynasty could have been extended in the early 2000s if the bench had been filled out more.

And it wasn't just the post player depth.
In 2003, guys like Fox and Shaw were on their last legs. What did management do? They went out and got... TRACY MURRAY?
Lindsay Hunter was traded for Kareem Rush, which looked like it could be a smart move in order to bring in a young wing player, but it didn't pan out.

Samaki Walker was brought in but we know how that turned out.

I understand that Kobe and Shaq ate up most of the salary cap, and certain players weren't signed because of the belief that they wouldn't fit in the triangle offense. But yeesh, the bench wasn't very good...

I'm not a Mitch hater. He acquired Pau eventually. He got Ariza for pennies. Got Shannon Brown. He made some good moves. But I wonder how in the world he thought the benhh was acceptable from 2001-03.


We won three titles with that "unacceptable bench", and then had a down year. And then we signed Malone and Payton and might have won another title if Malone hadn't gotten hurt. And then everything fell apart and Shaq left. Not sure how a better bench brings us anymore titles.
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 5:45 pm    Post subject:

slavavov wrote:
We did a bad job of drafting in the early 2000s. The Lakers could've drafted Andrei Kirilenko and Michael Redd, but passed on both.


It's easy to know who to pick in hindsight. But no one knew how good Andrei and Redd would be.

In fact, the teams that drafted Andrei and Redd actually drafted a couple of flame outs before them (Jason Collier and Quincy Lewis).

They were just lucky picks.
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 5:57 pm    Post subject:

We could have signed Billups for the MLE and drafted Tayshaun Prince 2002. Five championships in a row.
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madsen35
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 6:38 pm    Post subject: Re: Lack of depth and role player support on 2000-02 title teams

activeverb wrote:
madsen35 wrote:
I was looking at the roster of the 2001 title team.
The depth of post players was super weak.
Shaq's backup was Greg Foster. Occasionally Horace Grant would slide to the 5. Mark Madsen and Slava Medvedenko played limited minutes that year as young players.
Horry was pretty good, but not great.

I'm honestly stunned by how thin the Lakers were. Obviously, Shaq played a lot of minutes, so his backup didn't really need to. But a serious injury to Shaq would have spelled disaster.

I feel like the laker dynasty could have been extended in the early 2000s if the bench had been filled out more.

And it wasn't just the post player depth.
In 2003, guys like Fox and Shaw were on their last legs. What did management do? They went out and got... TRACY MURRAY?
Lindsay Hunter was traded for Kareem Rush, which looked like it could be a smart move in order to bring in a young wing player, but it didn't pan out.

Samaki Walker was brought in but we know how that turned out.

I understand that Kobe and Shaq ate up most of the salary cap, and certain players weren't signed because of the belief that they wouldn't fit in the triangle offense. But yeesh, the bench wasn't very good...

I'm not a Mitch hater. He acquired Pau eventually. He got Ariza for pennies. Got Shannon Brown. He made some good moves. But I wonder how in the world he thought the benhh was acceptable from 2001-03.


We won three titles with that "unacceptable bench", and then had a down year. And then we signed Malone and Payton and might have won another title if Malone hadn't gotten hurt. And then everything fell apart and Shaq left. Not sure how a better bench brings us anymore titles.


Yes, we did win three in a row. Mostly off the greatness of Kobe and Shaq, along with contributions sprinkled in from Fisher and some of the other role players. But I don't see how that bench was viewed as a positive. Look at the 2002 WCF against the Kings. Our bench guys: George, Hunter, etc. didn't play well. We got lucky to win, quite frankly.
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 6:42 pm    Post subject:

activeverb wrote:
slavavov wrote:
We did a bad job of drafting in the early 2000s. The Lakers could've drafted Andrei Kirilenko and Michael Redd, but passed on both.


It's easy to know who to pick in hindsight. But no one knew how good Andrei and Redd would be.

In fact, the teams that drafted Andrei and Redd actually drafted a couple of flame outs before them (Jason Collier and Quincy Lewis).

They were just lucky picks.

I agree there's always some luck involved in drafting, partly because it's hard to accurately predict how these guys will do in the NBA.

But look at all the success we've had at drafting guys late in the first round or in the second round in recent years, or even signing undrafted guys. Clarkson, Nance, Kuzma, Josh Hart, Thomas Bryant, Zubac, Caruso, etc.

That's a trend that means we starting doing a great job of scouting and interviewing players, as well as looking past athletic ability and looking at character and intangibles as well.
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Last edited by slavavov on Sat May 30, 2020 6:49 pm; edited 2 times in total
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 6:46 pm    Post subject:

CandyCanes wrote:
We could have signed Billups for the MLE and drafted Tayshaun Prince 2002. Five championships in a row.

This. Instead of signing Billups, or a young athletic wing, or a big, we re-signed Devean f'in George, a guy who was a total waste of athletic talent.

Kupchak was a solid GM, but he was pretty dismal his first several years, and maybe some blame should also go to others who were in the FO back then as well.
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 7:57 pm    Post subject:

slavavov wrote:
activeverb wrote:
slavavov wrote:
We did a bad job of drafting in the early 2000s. The Lakers could've drafted Andrei Kirilenko and Michael Redd, but passed on both.


It's easy to know who to pick in hindsight. But no one knew how good Andrei and Redd would be.

In fact, the teams that drafted Andrei and Redd actually drafted a couple of flame outs before them (Jason Collier and Quincy Lewis).

They were just lucky picks.

I agree there's always some luck involved in drafting, partly because it's hard to accurately predict how these guys will do in the NBA.

But look at all the success we've had at drafting guys late in the first round or in the second round in recent years, or even signing undrafted guys. Clarkson, Nance, Kuzma, Josh Hart, Thomas Bryant, Zubac, Caruso, etc.

That's a trend that means we starting doing a great job of scouting and interviewing players, as well as looking past athletic ability and looking at character and intangibles as well.


We've done a good job of drafting. But you're not going to get every sleeper or every pick that turns out to be surprise. By that standard, virtually every team screws up every draft.
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 8:09 pm    Post subject:

CandyCanes wrote:
We could have signed Billups for the MLE and drafted Tayshaun Prince 2002. Five championships in a row.


eh.

Tayshaun Prince was drafted before our picks in 2002, so we would have traded up to get him.

If you want to be an all-knowing oracle, we could have drafted Rashard Lewis, Carlos Boozer, Josh Howard, and a bunch of other guys at that level. But every team can say that.
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 8:13 pm    Post subject:

activeverb wrote:
CandyCanes wrote:
We could have signed Billups for the MLE and drafted Tayshaun Prince 2002. Five championships in a row.


eh.

Tayshaun Prince was drafted before our picks in 2002, so we would have traded up to get him.

If you want to be an all-knowing oracle, we could have drafted Rashard Lewis, Carlos Boozer, Josh Howard, and a bunch of other guys at that level. But every team can say that.


Kareem Rush was drafted at #20 and then immediately traded to us. Not sure if the deal was in place beforehand.
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 8:29 pm    Post subject:

CandyCanes wrote:
activeverb wrote:
CandyCanes wrote:
We could have signed Billups for the MLE and drafted Tayshaun Prince 2002. Five championships in a row.


eh.

Tayshaun Prince was drafted before our picks in 2002, so we would have traded up to get him.

If you want to be an all-knowing oracle, we could have drafted Rashard Lewis, Carlos Boozer, Josh Howard, and a bunch of other guys at that level. But every team can say that.


Kareem Rush was drafted at #20 and then immediately traded to us. Not sure if the deal was in place beforehand.


At the time, pretty much everyone thought Rush was a better pick than Prince.

And you know you can go the other way, and take away our good picks and give us lesser players. That’s the woulda-coulda-shoulda outcome no one ever thinks about.

How about instead of AC Green we pick Mike Brittain. Or instead of Vlade Divac we pick Dyron Nix. Or instead of Derek Fisher, we go for Priest Lauderdale. Or Charlotte doesn't trade us Kobe.

That's what makes this kind of thing so silly. Every team could have had an amazing draft in hindsight, or an awful draft in hindsight.
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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 9:01 pm    Post subject:

activeverb wrote:
CandyCanes wrote:
We could have signed Billups for the MLE and drafted Tayshaun Prince 2002. Five championships in a row.


eh.

Tayshaun Prince was drafted before our picks in 2002, so we would have traded up to get him.

If you want to be an all-knowing oracle, we could have drafted Rashard Lewis, Carlos Boozer, Josh Howard, and a bunch of other guys at that level. But every team can say that.


We took Rush at 20. Prince went 23rd. One of them worked out for the team. The other didn't.
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 11:34 am    Post subject: Re: Lack of depth and role player support on 2000-02 title teams

madsen35 wrote:
I was looking at the roster of the 2001 title team.
The depth of post players was super weak.
Shaq's backup was Greg Foster. Occasionally Horace Grant would slide to the 5. Mark Madsen and Slava Medvedenko played limited minutes that year as young players.
Horry was pretty good, but not great.

I'm honestly stunned by how thin the Lakers were. Obviously, Shaq played a lot of minutes, so his backup didn't really need to. But a serious injury to Shaq would have spelled disaster.

I feel like the laker dynasty could have been extended in the early 2000s if the bench had been filled out more.

And it wasn't just the post player depth.
In 2003, guys like Fox and Shaw were on their last legs. What did management do? They went out and got... TRACY MURRAY?
Lindsay Hunter was traded for Kareem Rush, which looked like it could be a smart move in order to bring in a young wing player, but it didn't pan out.

Samaki Walker was brought in but we know how that turned out.

I understand that Kobe and Shaq ate up most of the salary cap, and certain players weren't signed because of the belief that they wouldn't fit in the triangle offense. But yeesh, the bench wasn't very good...

I'm not a Mitch hater. He acquired Pau eventually. He got Ariza for pennies. Got Shannon Brown. He made some good moves. But I wonder how in the world he thought the benhh was acceptable from 2001-03.


2 things.

1. They didn't draft well. Rookies would have gotten PT on that squad because it lacked so much depth.

2. I think this tends to be a theme with Phil Jackson's teams, so that none of the veterans feel less secure about their job/role with the team, and the superstar players are most comfortable playing alongside veterans in the playoffs.
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 11:45 am    Post subject:

activeverb wrote:
slavavov wrote:
We did a bad job of drafting in the early 2000s. The Lakers could've drafted Andrei Kirilenko and Michael Redd, but passed on both.


It's easy to know who to pick in hindsight. But no one knew how good Andrei and Redd would be.

In fact, the teams that drafted Andrei and Redd actually drafted a couple of flame outs before them (Jason Collier and Quincy Lewis).

They were just lucky picks.


Andrei and Redd were tough picks.

Guys like Boozer, Prince, aren't/shouldn't be. Plenty of coverage.

Something like *not* drafting Madsen was a no brainer.

Barbosa over Brian Cook is a no brainer too.
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 12:03 pm    Post subject:

They never really got anything outside of Fisher, Horry, Fox, and Grant/Harper (first year played good but were done after that). Not drafting well did not help either. We couldn’t draft for crap during that run. But having Kobe and Shaq erased a lot of mistakes by the front office. They were just that damn good.
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 12:34 pm    Post subject:

Mike@LG wrote:
activeverb wrote:
slavavov wrote:
We did a bad job of drafting in the early 2000s. The Lakers could've drafted Andrei Kirilenko and Michael Redd, but passed on both.


It's easy to know who to pick in hindsight. But no one knew how good Andrei and Redd would be.

In fact, the teams that drafted Andrei and Redd actually drafted a couple of flame outs before them (Jason Collier and Quincy Lewis).

They were just lucky picks.


Andrei and Redd were tough picks.

Guys like Boozer, Prince, aren't/shouldn't be. Plenty of coverage.

Something like *not* drafting Madsen was a no brainer.

Barbosa over Brian Cook is a no brainer too.



Everything seems like a no-brainer with 20 years of hindsight.

If you go back and read the analysis immediately after the draft, there was a lot of compliments about the Madsen and Cook picks. Many people thought they were great picks.

There's a reason that half the lottery picks flame out. It isn't that easy to predict how guys are going to go in the transition from college to the pros.
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 1:50 pm    Post subject:

dcastillo wrote:
They never really got anything outside of Fisher, Horry, Fox, and Grant/Harper (first year played good but were done after that). Not drafting well did not help either. We couldn’t draft for crap during that run. But having Kobe and Shaq erased a lot of mistakes by the front office. They were just that damn good.


Imagine Kobe/Shaq with a #3 guy like Odom.
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 3:44 pm    Post subject:

activeverb wrote:
Mike@LG wrote:
activeverb wrote:
slavavov wrote:
We did a bad job of drafting in the early 2000s. The Lakers could've drafted Andrei Kirilenko and Michael Redd, but passed on both.


It's easy to know who to pick in hindsight. But no one knew how good Andrei and Redd would be.

In fact, the teams that drafted Andrei and Redd actually drafted a couple of flame outs before them (Jason Collier and Quincy Lewis).

They were just lucky picks.


Andrei and Redd were tough picks.

Guys like Boozer, Prince, aren't/shouldn't be. Plenty of coverage.

Something like *not* drafting Madsen was a no brainer.

Barbosa over Brian Cook is a no brainer too.



Everything seems like a no-brainer with 20 years of hindsight.

If you go back and read the analysis immediately after the draft, there was a lot of compliments about the Madsen and Cook picks. Many people thought they were great picks.

There's a reason that half the lottery picks flame out. It isn't that easy to predict how guys are going to go in the transition from college to the pros.


It's not 20 years of hindsight when even then, those were players I wanted.

Nice assumption though.

btw, I don't read immediate analysis of the draft, because anyone covering the draft back then, was pretty much a horrible scout.

But frankly, it shouldn't have been THAT difficult considering the amount of coverage for both of those players, plus Tayshaun being a local kid, plus the ability to work them out and even have them play 1 on 1.
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 3:58 pm    Post subject:

Fwiw even Jerry West picked several busts at the end of his time with the Lakers.
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 4:59 pm    Post subject:

Steve007 wrote:
Fwiw even Jerry West picked several busts at the end of his time with the Lakers.


True. Devean George was a good pick. Always a good idea to pick a former guard with a growth spurt. Coming from Div III, it was a big risk, but George pretty much had a 10 year career.

Lots of guys struggled for 2nd contract types after that.
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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2020 5:19 pm    Post subject:

Mike@LG wrote:
activeverb wrote:
Mike@LG wrote:
activeverb wrote:
slavavov wrote:
We did a bad job of drafting in the early 2000s. The Lakers could've drafted Andrei Kirilenko and Michael Redd, but passed on both.


It's easy to know who to pick in hindsight. But no one knew how good Andrei and Redd would be.

In fact, the teams that drafted Andrei and Redd actually drafted a couple of flame outs before them (Jason Collier and Quincy Lewis).

They were just lucky picks.


Andrei and Redd were tough picks.

Guys like Boozer, Prince, aren't/shouldn't be. Plenty of coverage.

Something like *not* drafting Madsen was a no brainer.

Barbosa over Brian Cook is a no brainer too.



Everything seems like a no-brainer with 20 years of hindsight.

If you go back and read the analysis immediately after the draft, there was a lot of compliments about the Madsen and Cook picks. Many people thought they were great picks.

There's a reason that half the lottery picks flame out. It isn't that easy to predict how guys are going to go in the transition from college to the pros.


It's not 20 years of hindsight when even then, those were players I wanted.

Nice assumption though.

btw, I don't read immediate analysis of the draft, because anyone covering the draft back then, was pretty much a horrible scout.

But frankly, it shouldn't have been THAT difficult considering the amount of coverage for both of those players, plus Tayshaun being a local kid, plus the ability to work them out and even have them play 1 on 1.


Cool.
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