Fast Break

Kurt —  February 20, 2006

Trades and All Stars and Olympics, oh my:

• Kobe, the Mona Lisa for a new generation? Check out this art exhibit. (Thanks to LAist for finding this.)

• The rumor seems to have gained some attention — even though everyone involved is denying it — so let’s talk about Steve Francis, or specifically Francis for Lamar Odom.

While they get there in very different manners, Odom and Francis are very similar in terms of production — both have a true shooting percentage of 53% (although Francis gets to the line more) and their PER is almost identical (16.3 to 16.4). Francis gives out more assists, Odom can grab you more rebounds. Francis is a solid defender at the point, but he lacks Odom’s versatility.

So that begs the question, straight up would Odom for Francis really an upgrade on the court? Francis is an All-Star level point guard, but would he be happy in the triangle, or would he go Gary Payton? My guess is that he would not like the initiator role much as most other traditional point guards have not. To his credit, Francis would provide another guy besides Kobe who will drive the lane every night.

Also, you’re actually spending more money — both are signed though 2009 and Francis actually makes a couple million more per year than Odom. Now, we’d have to assume that other players would be part of this deal, but outside of the untouchable on the Orlando roster (Dwight Howard) who else helps the Lakers build toward a title? Also, is Francis’ attitude what you want in a young Laker locker room?

Let’s say, for argument’s sake, Francis would adjust to life out West and in the triangle, and put up numbers similar to what he’s been doing in Orlando. Then, if you are the Lakers, you’ve traded a 6-10 guy for a 6-3 guy giving you basically the same level of production. And, all other things being equal, you take the taller guy in the NBA.

• That LeBron James guy is pretty good. They should give him some TV ads.

• And no, he’s not going to leave Cleveland as a free agent and come to LA (or NY for that matter), so don’t go there.

• Pabst Blue Ribbon is good beer, if served at below 30 degrees in a schooner in a dive bar.

• Kobe the playmaker made McGrady look good at the All-Star game.

• Curling is not a sport (but I like to watch it anyway).

• Great bit over at Deadspin, tracking things actually said by Charles Barkley on the air:

Kevin Harlan: “(Andre Iguodala) had 9 dunks, and 4 threes. He was on fire.”
Charles: “He wasn’t on fire, he was just excited he got to shoot in a game.”

• Speaking of Chucky, he’s up for induction in the Basketball Hall of Fame. What really frightens me is not his induction speech, but the one that would come from another nominee — Dick Vitale.

to Fast Break

  1. I agree with you Kurt, Francis doesnt seem to make sense. There probably wont be a mega-deal, but the Lakers have to be considering making a move for another guard. Candidates should include Tony Delk, Brevin Knight, Keyon Dooling, Derek Anderson or Anthony Carter. If the team can regain the defensinve focus and effort it exhibited in december, along with another legitimate nba starter, they could make the move for the sixth seed, beat Denver and anything can happen!


  2. Was it just me or was Dwayne Wade really hacking the hell out of Kobe everytime he was defending him in the AS Game?


  3. Actually Francis has a smaller contract and than Odom. According to CBS sporstlineOdom “has four more years remaining in a contract worth about $51 million. Francis, who has three more years and about $48 million left on his deal”

    Eventhough Odom 4 year avearge is 12.75 million a year and Francis 3 year avearge is $16 milion, rememebr NBA maximum contracts are backloaded so the finally three years the will average about the same.

    The untouchable on Orlando’s roster are Dwight Howard and Jamer Nelson. The magic turned down a deal for Ron Artest for Nelson so I seriously doubt they would include him for Odom… However….

    What about throwing Tony Battie(who is having a monster year) and or the rights of no show rookie Fran Vazquez of Spain into the mix? Because of his huge salary, I doubt Grant Hill could be included in a trade with Steve Francis, but Hill would be a very good pick up for the Lakers. With a huge contract that has 1 year left It would give the Lakers enormous salary cap flexibility in the summer of 2007 when tons of great free agents are on the market. Plus in the meantime Grant Hill would be perfect for the triangle offense (if healthy).

    So how about a Grant Hill, Fran Vasquez or Tony Battie for Lamar Odom and salary garbage trade?????

    You heard it here first


  4. I checked both hoopshype and RealGM for the salary, and as they figure it Odom hass three years (after this one) for $51.7 mil (counting this year), Francis the same three years after this for $61 mil. Now, some of that could be signing bonus or an option year that I’m not aware of.

    I’d love to get Battie, but he’s a last year guy so he may be hard to hold on to.


  5. has anyone heard about the three way deal between LA-ORLANDO-and HOUSTON? LO going to Orlando Francis going to Houston and T-Mac coming to LA? I read it on a differant board and don’t really think that it is very credible but I think that it would be a better deal then if we got KG for bynum, George, and Odom.


  6. Frustration this year has been with LO’s lack of aggression, but wouldn’t that problem be the inverse if they trade for Francis? and they lose rebounding.

    How does “Stevie Franchise” react when the real Franchise yells at him for not giving him the ball back?

    I think the word “picky” has best described the front office since the Shaq trade, Kwame for Caron excluded, and this seems risky.

    How many crass shouting heads were decrying the All-Star game today?

    The wife and I took the little one to the mountains for her first snow this weekend and rounded out our evening watching the festivities. (Mute for half time) We were entertained, even yelled and screamed at the end. It’s an exhibition, right?

    One last thing. Are those Native American drums beating in the background of the Kobe commercial?


  7. I can’t see Houston giving up TMac and getting just Francis back.


  8. neither can I Kurt but why is everyone writting about it and has anyone seen the pciture of KG and Kobe together on SI website? Oh yeah and Kurt have you read hoopsworld.. Wait a minute.. what am I thinking.. I really don’t think that I have seen anything that Mr. Pincus writes come to pass.

    P.S. hey Gatiho what mountains did you go to? Sorry I just miss home and I used to live near Mountain high. (Wrightwood)


  9. Gatinho, welcome back and I hope you had a good time on the slopes. Sounds like you enjoyed the All Star game more than I did, I enjoy the show but don’t get too worked up over it.

    Christian, I’ll admit I like Eric Pincus as a person, and I see what he does as more like what you see on the East Coast with teams — more aggressive reporting of rumors and motivations within the club. It certainly doesn’t work out the way he writes it all that often (at least lately), and in fact I think he’d personally like to see more movement than they do. Take what he writes with some salt, but if he’s writing about it then at least somebody is talking about it, even if it never happens.


  10. Thanks Kurt and I know about taking a grain of Salt with what every says.. Unless I hear it from Mr. Kupcakes mouth I don’t really beleive anything but without hopes and dreams then we wouldn’t be fans we wouldn’t even watch any games because we would know how everything turned out. I can only hope to see this come to pass


  11. Hey guys,

    i’m sorry i coudn’t be here more often discussing with you laker issues lately. Here in Italy we have a pretty amazing prospect that would help immediately: everyone’s crazy about Andrea Bargnani’s potential but actually the Bulls(thanks to the Knicks), Hawks or one of the worst team should be able to grab him with one of the top three pick. (Believe me he’s worth a top three!!) So I don’t even go on dreaming of Bargnani in a Laker uniform…
    just leave that to my brother who is a bulls fan.
    From here in Italy i just had a chance to watch 7-8 complete laker games so i’m not in a very good position to fairly judge our beloved ballclub play. That’s why i kept reading and listening to your (for the most part… wise and brilliant lol 🙂 points and opinions. Just let me add a few words to the mix.
    As I was convinced before the season started (had written that in one of the few posts of mine) “PREACHING PATIENCE” was the slogan for this year. I am really frustrated like all of us and thought the overall record should have been definitely better (say 29-23 at least) based on how the team was playing in december. Despite being frustrated I agree with Kurt “no move is better than a bad move (second time i cite the DisasterKnickerbockers or think of Trader Bob’s Blazers). The ultimate goal is winning a championship… and to do that we must be willing to wait till the right piece missing is available. Ok… we have to be active and ready to pull the trigger on any deal but giving up Odom for equal or not equal value doesn’t make any sense (unless you need to sign KG ok LeBron or anything close in next off-season… and that won’t be the case… remember we still have Brian Grant on the salary board). I even agree with those stating we are really one good player away from getting back to championship contention… a very good all-star caliber one who would fit with the triangle. Artest and Chris Bosh (best realistic target for the future on my opinion) would have been great additions… but if you are one great piece away you can’t fix by subtracting one of your main asset. It’s too soon to give up on LO’s experiment as the primary initiator. And where do we find another triangle initiator in three days without even having a few days of camp to teach him the basics… do you think that would help? Ok for Tony Delk’s type players… that would help balance the roster. As far as Tony Battie is concerned… am i missing on it or he was laker property (Van Exel for Battie and Lue) and the dispersed for the return of Travis Knight from the Celtics? It’s really bad wishing now something we threw away many years ago.
    On Mitch i need to say i’m not happy with the way he managed a few things lately and mainly draft choices like someone said… (passed on Josh howard, Gilbert Arenas even if we hadn’t a first that year and others i won’t name) but don’t blame him so much just yet. He’s a very clever gm, grew up with the Logo and even deserves part of Jerry’s credit cause he’s been always there assisting him in many big moves of the westian years. And i don’t see better gms available around the league… so let’s just be patient and give Mitch a chance! Remember… 1 or 2 players away… look at the Suns after the addition of Steve Nash… Hope to look at the Lakers after a Bosh type addition and Bynum’s growth next to Kobe and Lamar. The future isn’t so dark for us!


  12. Gatiho: I think those were dibbling basketballs but does sound like drums.


  13. PBR below 30:

    Treat yourself to a pickled egg and a Joe’s Special while you’re at it.


  14. John R. — I am a HUGE Joe Jost’s fan. I was just there, having a PBR, two weeks ago because my pregnant wife was craving a pickled egg. When I lived in LB I was there every week it seemed.


  15. There is a 90% chance we were there at the same time. HA.

    I’m LBC till I d-i-e.


  16. Are we allowed to trade Brian Grant’s contract?


  17. This site is unbelievable :-). I 100% agree with the comments. Keep the content flowing.Super fun website!.