Draft Help and other thoughts

Kurt —  June 12, 2007

Just over two weeks to go to the NBA draft, and because we bloggers tend to think we’re so damn smart, there are a few mock drafts coming out with bloggers serving as GM their respective teams. And I’m taking part in one (put on largely by the quality bloggers at Sports Blog Nation) representing the Lakers.

UPDATE: The picks in this mock draft have started, with the Tom and his blog Indy Cornrows as the host. The first two picks are what we all expected, then with the third pick Atlanta (represented by Chase Kuech from Impending Firestorm) took Al Horford. Keep checking in as the blog draft moves along.

So, what to do? Here’s the plan as I see it, but I’m looking for advice: 1) I’ve opened talks with Indiana about Jermaine O’Neal, but how high do I take that offer?; 2) I’ll ask about or listen to other trades that involve the pick (any ideas for Duhon – the Bulls don’t really need the pick); 3) draft somebody.

If it comes to drafting someone, well, my philosophy is the best available player is the call, you can’t try to fit needs that deep. But if you’re Mitch (or me in the mock), who do you take? I’d love it to be Nick Young (friend of the site Nate Jones did a great interview with him recently) but I doubt he falls to 19.

Josh McRoberts could be around, but what I saw of him at Duke didn’t impress me. On paper, well Chad Ford compares him Luke Walton. But McRoberts does what I don’t like in college players — he took a lot of nights off. I want hustle guys, guys with big motors, and McRoberts is not that guy.

One guy the Lakers are scheduled to out that I like and could be around is Javaris Crittenton, the 6-5 PG from Georgia Tech. He shot 35% from three last year and had 1.31 points per shot attempts, both solid numbers, especially for a freshman. That said, he looked like crap in the Tourney. A bit of a project, perhaps, but he’s athletic and a leader.

His teammate Thaddeus Young could be around, but I’m not as sold. He’s supposed to be a good passer but I saw him as a guy better in the open court than the half court (this based on like the 6 quarters I saw him play on TV and notes from that, so we’re not talking a lot of data). He also struggled in the tournament, I prefer guys who do well under pressure. But, is he a project who will blossom in a year or three?

Then there is Rodney Stuckey, who could turn out to be a steal in the NBA. Combo guard with potential, but because he didn’t play against good talent in college what I would get from scouts at draft camp and see in workouts would be huge. If he performed, he’d be worth a shot. Draft Express suggested he could be a Ben Gordon type guy in the NBA, and the Lakers could use that.

Maybe Rudy Fernandez? Any thoughts from our European readers who have seen more of him than we have?

Just some first round thoughts, although this may all be moot if a trade comes down. This mock draft could also reach the second round, where the Lakers will take a couple fliers – I’m really open to suggestions there.


Great comment from Reed regarding the Spurs:

The Spurs are better positioned to maintain and improve their roster than any other team in the league. They have managed the cap, free agency, and draft to utter perfection. So, I fear that no matter what the Lakers, do, it will be ultimately irrelevant.

Take a look at their cap situation:

(1) Every relevant player on their team is signed next season (with the possible exception of Jacque Vaughn — who is easily replaceable). So, they will bring their entire roster back and be the favorites again.

(2) After next season, EVERY player’s contract besides Duncan, Parker, and Ginobili expires. (Except for Jackie Butler, but his contract is so small it doesn’t really matter). Brilliantly, the Spurs management constructed their team so that every non-core player was signed to a short, reasonable deal AND would expire all at once. That’s right, eight contracts expire at once.

Duncan, Parker, and Ginobili’s contracts add up to 42M. This year, the salary cap was 53M, and it should be around 57-60M after next season. So after next season, the Spurs will be way under the cap (10-17M, depending on if they sign a draft pick and use their midlevel) and able to sign a max-level free agent to add to their trio of stars. They will also be able to resign their own free agents (such as Bowen, Oberto, Elson, Finley, Horry) without eating into this cap room.

I could contrast that roster management with an analysis of Kupchak/Jim Buss’s decisions over the last few years, but I‘ll spare you the frustration.


I still expect Cleveland to win at least one, maybe two (just to make my prediction come through of six games), but their lack of options after LeBron on offense is both familiar and painful to watch. They really need a Lamar Odom, a potential second option the Spurs have to respect.

The Lakers, with Odom and the ball-movement of Luke Walton, are the better offensive squad. But the Cavs are playing still because they are a better defensive squad – showing just how important that is and a reminder of what the Lakers need to focus on. Oh, and the fact Cleveland played in the East helped.

to Draft Help and other thoughts

  1. I’ve only been recently reading this blog…love it! Of course anything Lakers gets my love…

    1) on Jermaine O’Neal…Odom OR Bynum, not both. The pick is irrelevant. Add it or not, won’t be a huge loss. Personally I don’t think we trade Odom. I’d move just about anyone else besides Odom and Kobe, including the pick.
    2) as far as who to pick…I’m right with you on Nick Young. Not only local but looks polished enough to contribute right away. McRoberts looks like a perfect triangle guy, and being a Dukie you know he can play ball. I wouldn’t mind him being the pick. He can pass, handle the rock and understands the game. Already an improvement over Brian Cook. Still, not the sexy pick. Crittendon looks good, but too young and too much of a project to select. Same goes for Thaddeaus Young, though both should be good. Stuckley looks interesting, though I don’t know him. But sounds like a guy that could be another D Fish which would be nice. There’s a Finnish PG (Koppenenoneoneoneone???) who sounds like another Rajon Rondo and might be good for the Lakers (long defensive) in the first or even second round. Bellinelli would probably be a great pick as a Euro SG. Played with Bargnani in Italy. We need a shooter.
    3) Trade Bynum to the Bulls to get Duhon, move up to #9, and select Yi Jianlian. That’s the slam dunk draft day move :-). Get an experienced PG and an older draft prospect with professional experience. Add Bellini or Nick Young to bring off the bench and you have one heck of a squad!

    But I’ll probably just keep dreaming….


  2. Nas Big Kobe Fan June 12, 2007 at 5:44 am

    First of all I 100% beleive there is going to be a trade with Indiana. I as the GM of the Lakers do not want to give up BOTH Bynum and Odom for Jermaine O’neal. The pacers want both but also want to get rid of Jermaine O’Neal this offseason. I as the GM would rather keep Odom than Bynum to help Kobe Win Now. The Pacers want Bynum for Jermaine. So you offer the Pacers Andrew Bynum, The 19th pick, and whoever they want besides odom and kobe. Most likely would be Kwame Brown and Vladamir Radmanovic to match the salaries. Thus as the GM I go and try to sign Mo williams as the starting PG and another veteran such as stackhouse or Grant Hill type. I then sign and trade Luke Walton for Ron artest. Resign Chris Mihm Resulting in a roster of
    PG Mo williams/Jordan Farmar/ Sasha Vujacic
    SG Kobe Bryant/ Stackhouseor Grant Hill
    SF Ron Artest / Mo Evans
    PF Lamar Odom/ Ronny Turiaf/ Brian Cook
    C Jermaine O’neal/ Chris Mihm
    Then draft best players available with secound round picks and your set this team could easily win it all and even be a dynasty. God I wish i was the GM


  3. I liked that draft review, I want to get to know what the lakers can take this year

    About Rudy, I’ve talked a lot about him in this site
    but I can do it even more times

    Rudy’s an incredible Talent at creating baskets, getting to the hole or shooting from the outside, the 3rd better scorer in ACB league

    good leaping skills, one of his favourite plays is running the baseline for the alley-oop pass and the dunk

    also a pretty good defender, 2nd in steals in ACB (1st was his teammate 16 years old fenomenon Ricky Rubio)

    plays better in the 4th quarter

    Rudy’s NBA problem might be his upperbody strenth and may struggle the first year or couple of years since he get stronger

    he’s now playing the ACB semifinals against Real Madrid who’s holding Home court atvantage (5 games series)
    Juventut won 1 of the 2 first games in in Madrid losing one of those by only 2 points in the last possession.
    then at Badalona won the first by 9 and at the end of that game Rudy did his alley-oop move when a defender made him lose control in the air and hit the floor hurting him

    he couldnt’ play more than 14 min the 4th game being injured and the team was very shorthanded without him.

    in 5h is starting the last game of the series and Rudy is ready to play perfectly healed.

    I’ll report something about him from this game as it’s over


  4. Oh man, Kurt. No way Rodney Stuckey falls past the Pistons. If he were around at pick 19, i’m dancing frantically. He would be a no-brainer pick in my eyes. I watched a few feeds of his games late in the year and i don’t know why he isn’t a top-10 pick. When he wants to get to the rim and score, he does. If the defense lays off on him, he kills them with his jumpshot. He would be amazing as our 6th man. Lamar would love a guy like Rodney, as would Luke.

    Sadly, his defense is unproven. However, I don’t see him as a huge liability on the defensive end and he should be able to be a good team defensder.

    We still need a defensive PG, no two ways around that, but Stuckey would be that instant offense that would make Kobe sit back and smile.

    And everything I’ve heard about Rudy Fernandez has been fantastic. He has been considered a guy with great court awareness, clutch shooting, skilled passing/ball movement, ability to move without the ball, who can make good decisions, change the pace of the game with his ball-handling and his knack for keeping the defense on their heels after he gets the ball off a defensive rebound. He’s a tall guy also, just very scrawny.

    Most people say his defense is also pretty good, not great.

    I’m excited if either one of these 3 join the Lakers: Nick Young, Rodney Stuckey, or Rudy Fernandez. I think either one of these guys can come in and make an immediate impact.


  5. Great points Jethro… only one thing: 🙂 Bargnani and Belinelli didn’t play together. Bargnani played for Benetton Treviso and Belinelli for Fortitudo Bologna.


  6. By the way, read what Xavier and our other overseas readers say about these players. They were the first guy to throw up their hands and yell “NOOOOOO” when the Lakers picked up Shammond last season.


  7. Is it just me or are Jerry Buss’ sons both complete morons? Jimmy can’t keep his mouth shut, and has 0 basketball IQ. Johnny decided to tell the world on his MySpace page that Kobe is being traded.

    Please find new management Jerry. Your sons are ruining this franchise.


  8. Reed: Does that salary cap analysis take into account cap holds? Even though they aren’t under contract, they are still charged against the Spurs cap.

    Not that it isn’t a brilliant bit of management on the Spurs part allowing for great flexibility, but I don’t think the math works out that they could just add another all-star without renouncing Bird rights on one of the three, at least.


  9. Quick blogger draft update: It has yet to officially start, but we can safely say that Portland takes Oden and Seattle takes Durant. Big shocks. Atlanta is on the clock (I’ll post a link once it’s up).

    I proposed a trade of Kwame, Bynum and the 19th pick for JO, the Indy “GM” countered with Odom, Bynum and the 19th for JO. Or, he’d take Odom, Bynum, Kwame and the 19 for JO, Tinsley and Jeff Foster. So, we keep talking (I think he is less willing to trade JO than the actual Indy GM).


  10. Also, Chopperdave floated this trade idea and I thought I’d put it up for comment (since I’m looking to trade the pick):

    Odom/Kwame/Pick for Jack/Randolph/LaFrentz with Portland. Thoughts?


  11. Kurt,
    I have heard that the Pacers MUST get a 1st round pick in any deal or no deal. They don’t have a 1st rounder this year and want one badly. Tell the Indy “GM” that he can have either Odom or the pick, not both. If they want the pick that badly, then they are going to have to take your offer of Bynum, Kwame and the 19.

    Because if we give them Odom, Bynum AND the 19, that leaves us no more trade assets to get someone like Artest.

    Bynum, Kwame, and the 19 is the highest we will go for JO. (they can also have anybody off our bench if it makes them feel better)


  12. I’m really not fan of Randolph. Do you guys really see us winning a championship with Randolph in the mix?


  13. And what the hell is up with Dr.Buss’ kids!!!!!! Tell Johnnie Buss to go back and play on myspace and leave the business to the big boys!


  14. Here’s my take on the draft for the Lakers:


    My thinking is that Stuckey and Nick Young will both be gone by the time we get to pick. And if they want both Odom and Bynum for Oneal, there is no way you trade the 19th too. The Lakers need to learn how to play hard ball.

    Lastly, John R. is right about cap holds, however, if you’re the spurs, and you renounce all of those old crusty vets to sign a fourth star, you’re still in a great position, because with 4 star players, all you would have to do is fill the rest of your roster with serviceable role players and draft picks. And don’t forget they would also have the mid-level and possibly the bi-annual exception to work with. The Spurs are in contention every year because they have the best front office in basketball. Simply brilliant work by those guys…


  15. I for one think Randolph would be a nice addition. I am also one of the few who thinks that going after the big name isn’t exactly what we need.

    Unfortunately our two biggest trade assets (Kwame’s expiring and Bynum) both play the same position, so it makes any deal including BOTH tough because you would HAVE to get at least one big in return.

    I for one think we need an athletic SF who can defend a bit.

    How about a deal with Atlanta. Andrew Bynum and Sasha (salary purposes) for Josh Childress and the No.3 pick. That would get Atlanta a center (a big need) and they still would have the 11th pick to get a PG. The #3 is too high to draft Conley, and either he or Law or Crittendon will be around at #11.

    We get a starting SF who has long arms and can handle the ball (good for the Triangle) and the No.3 which we could use as trade bait or draft for need.

    I would have to think that if Bynum was in the draft he’d be considered with the #3 pick, am I wrong?


  16. Correct me if I’m wrong, but Johnny Buss basically was out of a job when the Sparks were sold. He is not inside any loop, as best we can tell.


  17. Actually Kurt, he is part of a loop – the myspace loop 🙂


  18. I should have also said that we would more than likely have to trade the #19 along with Bynum to get Childress and the #3.

    We could pick Horford, Yi, or Noah with that pick and I’d be very happy.


  19. We need athleticism and Defense, and Childress doesn’t get us that. Josh Smith is the guy I like over there. Good shot blocker, athletic, quick, full of desire.

    Bynum & Cook for Smith & Lue???


  20. 15) I’m not sure why, but as a Stanford grad the fact that you think Childress and a pick is worth Bynum kind of tickles me.

    Also, for the purposes of this do you have to follow salary rules? To be honest, I only know what trade machine tells me, and it seems like to make the contracts work 2 of these 4 have to be included in any deal: Odom, Kwame, Vlad, or Luke. I’d love the Bynum/Kwame/pick deal, but that’s way short contract-wise isn’t it?

    Also to Jones’s idea, I like the sentiment behind the Sean pick, but if we’re going BC then Dudley’s my man. I’m not one to care much for “off-court issues” or “attitude problems,” so long as the guy genuinely seems to love playing the game. Kwame despite all his physical gifts (sans his carny hands) will never make an impact because playing seems like a chore to him. I’d be very cautious about Williams for much the same reasons.

    Also to Giopurple, in defense of Jethro, didn’t those two play together on the national team? And if you’ve seen Marco play can you tell us anything about his game? The simple fact that Buford has his eyes on him is enough to tell me he’s worth a look.


  21. DR: Rule number one in this league: never trade good big for moderate small. Smith and Lue for Bynum? Bynum’s value is much higher than that. Bad deal in every way for the Lakers, unless they are getting Atlanta’s third pick. Also, Smith is a weakside shot blocker, but he isn’t much of a one on one on the ball guy, and that is what the Lakers need…


  22. How about you then send the No.3, Kwame and Brian Cook to Memphis for Pau Gasol? Whether anyone says someone is on the trading block or not changes when you flash that #3 pick out there.

    PG Farmar
    SG Kobe
    C Gasol
    PF Odom
    SF Childress

    Seems alright to me.


  23. Actually started laughing during Game 2 after looking over at the Spurs bench and seeing Jackie Butler behind it. He could start for ten teams in this league. He three years, he could start for half the teams in the NBA.


  24. Jones: I just don’t think that Bynum has proven anything yet. Smith is like K-Mart 2. He has proven WAY more than Bynum has, and in my mind has much more potential. As for Cook, he is a wasted piece on this team. Him and Radman are the same player.

    The trade helps both teams.


  25. DR: I just don’t think Atlanta gives up Josh Smith. I might be wrong but for them isn’t he as “untouchable” as they come?


  26. John R–

    You are right that a team’s free agents continue to use up a team’s cap space in cap holds. The amount of the cap hold is determined by the player’s status (Bird Rights, coming off a rookie contract, etc.) and previous salary. But, teams can also renounce players to keep their free agents salaries from counting against their cap space — so they can renounce anyone they don’t want to bring back. If the Spurs wanted to bring back a few of their own free agents after next season, some of their cap space would be taken up. Because: (1) they are positioned to be so far under the cap (perhaps over 15M), and (2) the free agents they would resign are coming off of low salaries and are likely to resign for reasonable amounts, the Spurs should still be able to sign a 8-10M player next summer. This is scary.

    Another, related thought (and one that is more relevant to the Lakers). Looking back at past offseason and inseason trades, it is clear that expiring contracts are worth more midseason than offseason. This seems logical as teams trading away a big salary player for expiring contracts are usually trying to rebuild and no team wants to tell its fans that the coming season will be devoted to losing. However, as the February deadline approches, reality sets in and the idea of trading a disgruntled, high salaried player for cap space is more attractive. Look at the recent in season blockbuster trades: Vince Cater to New Jersey; Baron Davis to Golden State; Stephon Marbury to New York; Allen Iverson to Denver; Ron Artest to Sacramento, etc. All of these trades were mid-season. Admittedly, some of these trades worked out better than others, but the common theme is that teams were able to acquire very talented players for 10 cents on the dollar by using expiring or more favorable contracts.

    The Lakers currently have the second largest expiring contract in the league in Kwame’s 9.1M contract (only Theo Ratliff in Boston is larger). Unless the Lakers can use that contract to get a player like Oneal or Gasol without losing Odom or Bynum, I think they would be better served to hold on to Kwame this summer and use that contract when it is more valuable next January/February. At that point, they would have the second most attractive contract to use in trading for a star. Perhaps Gasol, Garnett, Kidd, or some other valuable piece will be attainable then. Someone surely will be.

    The value of expiring contracts is yet another reason the Spurs are so well managed. This season, they will have EIGHT expiring deals to work with. They can package those contracts to easily trade for a needed piece during the season if they feel lacking. Curse them.


  27. Josh Smith untouchable? Are you guys crazy? They would swap smith for Bynum in a heartbeat!


  28. 26) Well, wouldn’t Josh Smith help this Laker team and fill more of a need than Bynum at this point?


  29. 27: No. Need production from the paint, not perimeter. Paint good, perimeter baaad.


  30. I’d want Salim Stoudamire in any trade with Atlanta. Dead-eye shooting point guard? Yes please!


  31. 27- No. Josh Smith, if on a playoff team, is best suited as the 6th or 7th man, a guy that brings energy, blocked shots and offensive rebound dunks. Andrew is a starting center, developing and unproven, but still a starting big. That alone makes him far more valuable than josh smith, who isn’t dime-a-dozen, but closer to that than a star.

    kurt/chopperdave- I like that trade a lot. Jack is gonna be a solid pg, reminds me of a young billups, randolph is an actual low-post threat. Raef is a problem, but if thats an expiring, i’d think about that deal, because you keep bynum in it. You can then either trade bynum for a current impact player with raef’s k or sign a center for a year or two to let Andrew develop


  32. I added a report on Belinelli at comment n. 43 of the previous post. I had added it here too but i guess Kurt removed it since it was the same report. You can read there about his game chopperdave.


  33. I’m not sure but i think Belinelli and Bargnani never played even on the national team. Hey kurt can you move my report on Belinelli’s game here… since I made a mistake posting it in the previous thread.


  34. Let me know what you guys think of this report on Belinelli… i re-post it here:


    I know Marco Belinelli’s game pretty well. I’ve seen him play different times. He certainly is one of the brightest talents we have here in Italy. He really resembles the kobe bryant of the first 2-3 season. He shows a lot of talent and competitiveness, despite he’s very young he already show great leadership skills and the desire to take over when it counts. And he did that not only in the italian league but in the Euroleague and leading the Italian National Team to very good results in the last world championship. He looks like a poor man’s kobe bryant but i doubt he can be a combo guard. He’s a pure 2 guard, he can create his own shot and really has great skills and good athletism. He has to improve his in between game and has great potential. He clearly has a bright future ahead and could really get close to Emanuel Ginobili. He’s certainly a steal at 19. On the downside he’s not ready to play in the NBA from the physical standpoint. He needs to get stronger and despite he shows good defensive skills in the italian league i don’t think he can really be a good defender in the NBA right now. He has instincts and could be a good on the ball defender but i don’t think he can guard quicker and stronger guards right now. To sum it up… on offense: the sky is the limit for this guy… but don’t count on him to be a point guard… or a lead guard in the triangle, he clearly is more suited at the 2. on defense: he has to get stronger and despite having good feets i expect him to be abused by stronger, quicker and more experienced player. So I’d say if the lakers have a chance and want to go with potential… get him… he’s going to be a steal in 2-3 years but if they want an NBA ready player… he’s not ready yet. Anyway he’s not even the most gifted and talented youngster we have in italy. This year exploded a 18 year older, look out for Danilo Gallinari. He’s a 2-3 and can really do it all… Look for him to be a lottery pick next year! I guess the Lakers would really need a scout in Italy.


  35. Kurt – Indy has no guards that they like and way too many overpaid/underproducing bigs. How about Bynum, Farmar, Evans (expiring contract, plus Indy needs athletic guards), #19, Sasha (expiring contract, plus their new coach likes 3 point shooters), resigned McKie (expiring contract), plus $3m in cash (to offset part of McKie’s contract) for JO?

    The Lakers would then use their MLE for a PG and sign some vets for the minimum to back up SG and PG.


  36. 32. Giopurle, my bad. I saw it twice in my “held for moderation” file and didn’t notice it was in there for different posts. It’s in now.


  37. 31) Raef is among the worst contracts in the league. We’d be taking it on in exchange for Kwame’s expiring as a favor to them, because Odom and the pick aren’t worth Randolph and Jack. Randolph despite his headaches puts up great numbers and Jack is one of the most promising point guards not name Deron or Chris (I’m not actually sure why he’d be on the chopping block unless they’re really convinced that Sergio is the future).

    and 32) thanks so much for the scouting report. And I stand corrected, I think I just assumed Bargnani played in Japan last year, but I was wrong. I had been hoping that Belinelli could handle the point a little (DraftExpress had projected him as a potential combo), but he still sounds like a great prospect. Added bonus that Kobe would probably enjoy having an Italian in the locker room.

    and 35) please no! In some (illogical) ways I’d have a harder time seeing Farmar go than Odom. I love Odom but for some reason (that I can’t even attempt to explain) he never has felt like a true Laker to me. Farmar, on the other hand, I’ve pictured in P&G since I first saw him play.


  38. In a perfect world, we would trade Bynum, Kwame, #19 and whoever else necessary to match salaries, to Indy for JO. Then move Cook, Walton (sign and trade) to Sac for Artest. Leaving us with a starting lineup of:
    1- Farmar
    2- Kobe
    3- Artest
    4- Odom
    5- JO

    This would be our “dream” team for next season. Is there any reason this can’t be done, other than the fact that Kupchak is as good a negotiator as Johnny Drama?


  39. Well done Skigi, can’t be enough Entourage references to make me happy. (Also, I almost did a Soprano’s post — count me in the group that liked the ending.)


  40. Kurt- I thought the ending would have been fine if not for the sudden-pitch black. If Meadow would have just walked in and sat down and the scene faded away to credits, that would have been fine. The problem was that everybody thought their cable boxes stopped working. I didn’t understand that.


  41. 37. I also like Farmar, but Bynum & the #19 isn’t enough talent for a JO trade. Indy has essentially no guards on their roster (Daniels is injured and Tinsley will be excommunicated from Indy sooner or later), so Farmar should be quite a carrot for Indy, and Evans and even Sasha might even be enticing for Indy.


  42. Screw the big name, overvalued players. JO is in that category. JO hasn’t played a full season in 7 years, and he’s been in the league for 11 years. His salary is outrageous to boot.

    THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX. We don’t need this guy.

    Honestly, I would rather trade Kobe than bring him here. That says ALOT.


  43. DR- I don’t think JO is the savior, but we need balance. Offensive and Defensive balance.

    The only way to do that is with a legitimate inside threat. JO is the only player available that is a proven 20 and 10 guy with the ability to swat shots that come from penetration.

    Odom is a wonderful talent, but his skill-set doesn’t compliment Kobe’s the way JO’s game does. Would I give Drew and LO away for him, no, but i’d do LO, Brown and # 19 or Bynum, Brown, Sasha, Mo, and #19. Those kinds of moves are as outside the box as we can do, what other legitimate big is avaiable?


  44. Wouldn’t a smaller scale deal like Kwame for Nick Collison and Earl Watson make some sense?

    We’d still have Bynum, LO, and the #19 pick as trade assets if so inclined.

    We’d get a big who does the dirty work down low and a PG with above average defensive abilities. Not sure what Seattle’s plan is, that is a franchise in a bit of flux.

    Just a (smaller scale) thought.


  45. Lakers have three major issues: outside shooting, perimeter defense, interior offense, and interior defense.

    JO improves the interior defense and the interior scoring, something that is very difficult to find in this league.

    Collison, Watson, and Josh Smith pretty much don’t help the lakers in any of those areas. And if they do, they are a liability elsewhere. Watson is a good perimiter defender, but is a liability because of his lack of an outside shot. Collison is just a stiff. Josh Smith is athletic and fun to watch, but he doesn’t provide anything the Lakers need. He’s a good helpside shot blocker, but not a good one on one perimiter defender. He can score off of drives, but doesn’t have an outside shot. He’s basically a better version of Mo Evans. Also, where would Josh Smith play on this team? He’s a SF and we plan on keeping Luke Walton. Unless you plan on moving Walton or having one of them come off of the bench.

    In order to get through the west you have to be able to defend the pick and roll and guard Tim Duncan (or make him tired/get him in fould trouble by going at him on the offensive end). You also need cats to step up and hit an open shot when Kobe or whoever else get’s doubled and kicks it out. I think we just need to keep those issues in mind when we consider how to fix the team…


  46. *four major issues, not three…


  47. 45) “Lakers have three major issues: outside shooting, perimeter defense, interior offense, and interior defense. ”

    Are there any other aspects of basketball? lol.

    Inside and outside offense, inside and outside defense. Nope, that about covers it.


  48. Mid-Range game: fine, penetration game: fine, passing ability: fine. Overall scoring ability: fine. But yes, they are terrible at pretty much everything else…


  49. 48) I hope that the Kobe dramatics don’t deter from the fact that no matter what happens this offseason, this “re-shaping” is going to take a couple years to get the Lakers back into contender status.

    I think we’ve identified the fact that we aren’t “one player away” from competing with the Spurs, no matter who that player is.

    The Kobe-JO salary situation scares me, that’s my biggest concern.


  50. DrewBoy- They aren’t one move away, but they aren’t seasons away either. The Lakers won a title the first season Phil came in and that included lots of roster turnover. Adding JO, an MLE perimeter defender/3 pt shooter and a improvement from the young players can potentially lead to a very successful season, not 3 or 4 years from now, but next year. In reality, they are not that far away, they just have glaring holes, sounds weird, I know, but that’s where they’re at.


  51. Nas Big Kobe Fan June 12, 2007 at 6:36 pm

    my solution is the best the rest of you guys are morons


  52. Nas Big, initially I wasn’t going to address your post (and I probably shouldn’t still) but the moron comment kinda tipped it for me:
    a) I don’t think JO for Bynum/Brown/Vlad is gonna fly
    b) Kings can get back way more than Luke for Ron
    c) After you’ve already signed Mo to MLE money (which isn’t going to happen by the way, someone’s going to pay the man), where on earth do you get the second MLE contract for Stackhouse?
    Yes that would be a killer roster, but why not get Garnett while we’re at it?


  53. Just a reminder (since I just did a little editing in the comments) we are not about wild fantasy and wildly impossible deals here. If that’s what you’re into there are no shortage of Laker places that can be posted. Let’s keep this in the realm of reality (and just because it clears trade checker doesn’t make it reality).


  54. Nas Big Kobe Fan-
    Unfortunately, we are not playing NBA LIVE 07 with trade restrictions off. Your trades only work if we have the power to make Indiana accept, because theres no way in hell they will take 2 of our worst players with Bynum for JO. They like to win too. And chopperdave brings up the points that a) you will not be able to get Mo Williams for MLE and b) How do you plan on signing stackhouse or g.hill AND mo williams.

    So we’re the morons?


  55. My vote’s for Stuckey or Crittendon… Yahoo Sports has a pretty good draft page that includes video of almost all of the top 40+ picks.


    Take Splitter if no guards are left. Watched him play last year while in Brasil for their national team and liked what i saw.

    Trades make my head hurt. esp lately, but does anyone treasure any our trash?

    The final episode of the Sopranos was brilliant, as were the two before it. I love when movies and television realizes that all things literary transfer very well to the small and the big screen. I’m a little disappointed in the overall reaction to its open-endedness, but what do you expect from an English teacher.

    “Oh the movie never ends, it goes on and on and on…”


  56. Gatinho: Thanks for that list. I’m going to be watching all of those videos for the rest of the night. I like Stuckey as the Lakers first choice but don’t believe he’ll be available.

    But look at that video of Sean Williams, and you’ll see why I want the Lakers to draft him. That guy is a defensive force!


  57. Tough choice between Crittenton and Williams. Wow, Crittenton can shoot. I hadn’t really seen him play that much this season. If he can translate that to the NBA level, he might be the choice…


  58. Holy smokes.I’m sold Nate. I don’t care what his offense is like, I’m impressed. Tyrus Thomas-ish. Was he actually mad at himself on the one play for not keeping the blocked shot in bounds?


  59. the lakers are going to have to overpay to get better. the trade of odom, bynum and #19 for jo’neal is a loss in terms of talent, but i think it does make the lakers better. no way indy takes kwame in place of odom. lakers’ management is way under the gun to make a deal.

    i think the lakers make that deal, and make a deal with sacto for artest. the lakers will reunite JO and artest, but this time with kobe. gotta look at the big picture ….


  60. warren (philippines) June 13, 2007 at 12:01 am

    I am glad Kurt has opened up a discussion for this. A good GM does that – he looks for input and consolidates them, doing sacrifices, but are necessary, doing gambles, that exceed the risk-reward concept.

    In the light of all the rumors concerning JO, there was one that milled that Bynum will not be part of the deal. I do not know which camp did it but I do not buy it.

    Chris Duhon will be an excellent addition for us, as he is on the block. But I do not see anything we have that interests the Bulls needs. Bynum will not be traded for Duhon.

    The #19 pick, among the aforementioned, looks like someone who can directly contribute to a team like Memphis or Charlotte.

    Before anything more, I like to do a trade w/ the Bucks w/ Mo Williams (s&t) and the #6. I am not sure who I will package w/ Bynum on that one. They will surely like Bynum as he is pegged to be a top 5 pick this year, had he not entered the draft earlier. The Bucks might not be interested in Kwame’s expiring.


  61. Gatiho, thanks for that link post.

    And you have to love that Sean Williams tape, I was not that familiar with him but even Chad Ford says he may be the best interior defender in the draft. He also was kicked off the team mid-season and had other issues. If I’m a GM the interview with him, and a talk with coaches, goes a long way to deciding if I draft him.

    But for our purposes, he’s in my mix if I don’t trade the pick.

    And people — throw some my potential second rounders my way in the next few days. This mock is going two rounds.


  62. Gabe Pruitt at #19. Think about it… best defense I saw out of a guard in the tourney, good shooter with potential to be a really good shooter, handles the ball, can run the triangle, quick… Gabe Pruitt


  63. Second Rounders:

    Aaron Aflalo-The perfect role player…http://sports.aol.com/fanhouse/2007/04/09/aaron-afflalo-the-next-raja-bell/

    Bobby Brown: I hope he goes first, but most likely will be a second rounder…

    DeVon Hardin:
    Possible first rounder, but some people think he might fall to the second…


  64. On Crittenton, I know it’s not a great reason, but I think his choke job against UNLV, especially the 5-second violation, has permanently scarred my view of him. I know he was young and a lot of the blame rests at Hewitt’s feet, but that kind of mental collapse worries me.

    On Sean Williams, I love the Tyrus-like potential, and have zero problem with a dude who likes pot, but these are the kinds of quotes I never want to hear about a prospeft: (from nbadraft.com and reiterated elsewhere)
    “His work ethic and commitment to basketball are very much in question … Doesn’t always play the game with intensity … unwillingness to hustle … at times it doesn’t seem like he is interested in playing …”
    When has a guy like this ever worked out? His potential is tempting, but I just believe there will be guys with similar talents whose dedication is less questionable. I guess Kurt’s right that if in the interview process he demonstrates the kind of commitment needed I might take the chance, but he’d really have to prove it.

    I’ll be back in a little bit with some second round ideas; this needs some consideration.


  65. Nas Big Kobe Fan June 13, 2007 at 2:32 am

    you can trade Bynum kwame and radmanovic and the 19th for JO easily. The thing you guys do not understand is that they want to get rid of JO very badly and his huge contract. They really want BYNUm Badly so they can start over with Bynum and Ike diogu and the 19th pick. They want to REBUILD NOW. Also we can get Artest for LUke Walton easily. Ron Artest has worn out his welcome in sacramento with all his issues. Sacramaento wants to get rid of him. Then you sign Mo Williams becuase Milwaukee is going to go after Billups. Also you might overpay for Mo Williams becuase he is a perfect fit. You then resign Chris Mihm and then Grant Hill for below the midlevel. you guys get it now???


  66. If you draft a PG in the first round you’re basically saying Farmar isn’t going to be a Laker very long. We need a Shooter. We need a Post Defender. We don’t need another young PG in the first round. Ask Orlando how two young PG’s work in tandem.

    I’d stick with Nick Young, Rodney Stuckey, Marco Bellini, Josh McRoberts, DeVon Hardin, Jason Smith, Sean Williams…in that order…Young and Stuckey are studs…Watching those videos that became obvious these guys will be excellent pros. Bellini, I dunno, but if what you read is true, he’s a good pick – plus everything below that point is suspect. McRoberts has post moves and a J and isn’t afraid to mix it up inside, hence the best big I can see available at 19. Hardin looks like he cannot only play, but plays with passion – boy is that needed. Smith is athletic and has a ton of energy, not a great offensive threat, but he does have some moves – probably taken by GS. Williams can block shots. He can dunk. What else exactly can he do? I didn’t see it in the video, and combined with his off-court troubles, I don’t know that it’s worth putting him ahead of these other guys.

    A couple good 2nd Round guys. Zabian Dowell if he’s around…long defender, good combo guard. The POY from the Big East – Jared Dudley, another BC kid – he looks like he should be able to contribute. I’d really take Kopponeneneonongoneron from Finland in the Second round…my guess is he falls and he’d be a great longterm PG prospect. Taurean Green comes to mind as well. Big Baby Glen Davis I really like…outside shot at the 1st round there…well outside ;-). Aaron Afflalo would help the perimeter D as well, but boy does he remind me of Kareem Rush…

    Thems my thoughts.


  67. 64) You can’t offer Mo Williams any more than the MLE, which the Bucks will almost certainly top. And if you offer Mo Williams the whole MLE (which you most certainly would have to) then there’s no money left to offer Grant Hill or other such veteran players. Unless you’re talking about a minimum salary, which they won’t sign for.

    Also I don’t see Sacto trading Artest for Walton as they’ll likely draft a much better SF (Brewer, Thornton, Wright) with their pick. It’s possible, but not probable.


  68. LOL, sorry for posting so soon repetitively but just saw this on ESPN.com Marc Stein Chat:

    Eddie (ID):: Please don’t tell me we’re sending Odom, Bynum & the 19th pick for JO! That’s way too much! What about Bynum, Kwame, Radmanovic and the 19th pick? The salaries work out, too.

    Marc Stein: Lakers aren’t bargaining from a position of strength because everyone knows how desperate they are. Even if you subbed a signed-and-trade Luke Walton for Radmanovic — and that kind of deal obviously couldn’t happen until after free agency starts July 1 — I imagine Indy still says no.


  69. Here’s a post on my hopes for the second round picks:

    Condensed version: out of the pool of players Draft Express projects going in the second round my wishlist goes something like, in descending order:
    Pruitt, Afflalo, Dowdell, Tucker, Koponen, Singletary


  70. We better not give up Bynum! Odom & Kwame & 19th for JO and Tinsley. Two injured guys for an injured guy and a bad contract. That’s seems fair.


  71. Pruitt will be around in the 2nd, and we should jump all over that


  72. Nas Big Kobe Fan –
    We only have a MLE to sign players. Thats 5mil only. The point we are trying to get to you is that you cannot sign Mo Williams, Chris Mihm AND Grant Hill for 5 mil TOTAL. Mo Williams is going to get 7-8 mil from Milwaukee. We could possibly sign Mihm and G.Hill for 2.5 each and I think thats what the Lakers would like to do if we make the Odom Bynum 19 for JO trade and the whoever else for Artest trade. But after all that, we will still have a hole at PG because we will not have any more money to sign free agents.

    And your opinions are welcome here. We hear your opinions and discuss them with you. No need to call anybody here a moron because they do not see eye to eye with you.

    And I have been hearing that Chris Duhon is on the trading block. I think all of us here have been waiting for that news for the past 4 months. The question is… what do we have that the Bulls would be interested in (besides Bynum). I know they need lowpost scoring but we don’t really have any of that here. I wonder if they would be interested in Brian Cook. Cook’s salary should be similar to Duhon’s and Cook is an Illinois native.


  73. I agree. If Pruitt is arround in the second, I’m all for picking him. But not so hot on him as a 19th pick. Crittenton and Williams are my picks there (just because I think Young and Stuckey will both be gone by then).


  74. Well I just went to the ESPN trade maching and Duhon for Cook straight up doesn’t work. I threw Sasha into the mix and it still didn’t work so it’s starting to look harder than I thought to trade for Duhon


  75. Just a quick mock-draft update: Oden, Durant, Al Horford to Atlanta witth the three, Conoly to Memphis with the four, and the Celtics are on the clock.

    Trade negotiations with Indiana continue, and I’m going to float the trade idea with Portland (blogger GMs more willing to talk trade in conference than real GMs, I think). Great second round suggestions, thanks.

    And I don’t think any trade the Lakers want to make is going to be easy, but that’s the topic of the next main post.


  76. skigi: The ESPN trade machine is set to pre July first numbers and trade restrictions. Brian Cook for Duhon would work straight up after July first. But right now he because he has a pending extension from a rookie contract that doesn’t kick in until July 1st, he is basically untradeable. They call it the poison pill provision.


  77. Just my two cents, but I am not sold on Conley Jr. as some people are. I truly seee him as the 3rd best pg in this draft, behind Crittenton and Acie Law, and barley ahead of Pruitt and Green. Not feeling him, he can’t shoot, he won’t be penetrating in finishing at the next level and he is not an elite defender. I wouldn’t spend a lottery pick on a guy that isn’t bad at anything in particluar, but isn’t great at anything either.

    Jones- I’m with you on Williams, that should be our top priority. That would make me more comfortable trading away any combo of LO, Kwame and Bynum because you would have the big who comes back in whatever trade (JO?) and Ronny and Sean Williams as young bigs to go along with another big (Chris Mihm?)


  78. 77. After July 1, Cook will be BYC, so he’ll still be hard to trade except as part of a big trade or to a team with sufficient cap room.

    Kurt – I’m not sure if you didn’t see it or if you don’t think it’s worthy of comment, but I proposed a trade with Indy in post 35 that I think could work for both teams.


  79. LG Gold, I saw that and thought it a good idea, and went with something similar. The last offer I made was Odom, Vlad, Evans and the 19 for JO. If they wanted to swap out Kwame/Bynum with Odom/Evans, I would do that too. But I liked your idea of tempting them with a guard, I just would prefer to keep Farmar if possible. Not a deal breaker, but I like his potential (and contract). Two other little things: 1) because this is a trade within a mock draft I sort of have to keep the 19th pick in the deal, in the “real world” I may have taken it off the table; 2) In the real world I would not be giving out trade offers like this, unless it was a planned “leak” to move the negotiations in some direction.

    As I said, the Indy blogger “GM” in this (who seems a bright guy) is less willing to trade JO than I think the real Indy front office is. I get the impression the real Indy wants to start over, but this blogger thinks that with a smart pick up and a healthy JO, this is a 45-50 win team in the East. They may be, but to me that is just delaying the pain. They are not winning a tittle with what is there, the Cavs and Bulls are young and improving. To me, Indy needs to get young and start building again (which is why if I were them I’d want Bynum and Farmar and the pick in any deal). But it’s not my call.


  80. WIlling to move != willing to dump.

    I have no doubt Indiana is willing to move JO…for a package that includes (a happy) Odom, Bynum and 19.
    My suggestion would be to be on the horn with the Houston GM and see if you can make all the side deals that JONES proposed go down. Without those side deals, anything less than Bynum, Odom and the 19 for JO is inconceivable to me given the Lakers (your) lack of strength.

    The more I think about it, the more I hate this trade for Indy. They already have MDJr. and Murphy. Unless the vision is some bizarro FD team of giant tweeners who can only kinda shoot and definitely can’t defend playing the 2 through the 5, Odom and/or Vlade doesn’t make sense. The Lakers need to help them clean up their roster too if JO is the singular target.

    Jamaal &
    Mike &
    Vlade &
    Lamar &



  81. A smack down to arrogant suns fans:


    There’s a jab to unrealistic Laker fans as well…


  82. 77 you’re right on Cook being base year after July first. Didn’t realize that he got a more than 20% raise from his rookie deal. So he’s actually easier to trade now with his poison pill provision (because his cap number is higher) than it is to trade him after July first. Gotta love that salary cap…



  83. Kurt I think you offered way too much. For all the smoke about J.O’N to LA(or maybe NY),there’s nothing about him going to any other team. To me that means Indy isn’t putting him out there.(Compare w/all the Shaq,T-Mac and now Marion rumors that had them going to 1/2 the League). Nor has Bird said that J.O’N isn’t going anywhere. Reading the perhaps imaginary tea leaves,that spells J.O’N has asked to be traded-to La or NY.
    And if the bidding is between those two teams,LA wins. Odom and 19 is far superior to anything NY has to offer,and Bynum versus Frye still tilts LA’s way. The only offers LA should make are Kwame,Bynum and the 19 or Lamar and the 19. Anything other than salary filler is forgetting Indiana is under just as much pressure as LA.


  84. Stephen- I would agree with you. The reported offers we are making for O’neal seem high considering there is only one other serious bidder for him. However, after Kobe’s tirades and temper tantrums the Lakers are in a far worse position to take a ‘wait and see’ approach. This forces them to be proactive and possible overpay to field a team that will appease Kobe. Ha, appease Kobe sounds funny, like he’s some sort of dictator willing to back off his nuclear threats if we placate to his demands (sorry kurt for the political analgoy)


  85. *shakes head*

    #1 In case you forgot, it was Kobe that demanded a trade. No tea leaves, ouiji board, or 8-ball required.

    #2 I wouldn’t want to be in a bidding war with NYK. They have a few very nice young pieces right now that would fill the holes in the Pacers’ roster better than anything the Lakers can offer.


  86. #1 And Kobe took back his demand-or he didn’t. Irrelevant as we are talking about acquiring J’O’N to keep Kobe-and the fans-happy.
    #1A Indiana is acting as if J.O’Neal has made the same demand behind closed doors.
    #2 Have you really looked at the Knicks roster and watched them play as opposed to reading Zeke’s spinning about all his wonderful assets? There is a reason every time Zeke pipes up about how he has all these wonderful young players he can trade for KG or Kobe or Artest or Jermaine or,or,or…his statements are greeted w/a deafening silence. Not even the network “insiders” can muster up a scenario that isn’t laughable. Q-Rich,3yrs,bad back. Crawford,gunner supreme,4 yrs $8mil+/yr. Jeffries,huge flop,4 yrs. 5’nothing SG Nate Robinson. Know anybody who thinks Frye has a bigger upside than Bynum? Renaldo Balkman,SF w/no outside shot. Lee,who everyone would like,but isn’t going to be included in any trade. Indy trades w/Knicks and becomes the Mid-West Knicks w/contracts that will hang around their neck for the rest of the decade.
    If Indy is going to rebuild the right formula is well known,clear cap space(Kwame),get draft picks and trade for young player(s) w/potential (Bynum). If they think they can reload on the run and compete in the weak East,getting a borderline All-Star(Odom)who is also a playmaker is far superior to a collection of journeyman gunners w/bad contracts.


  87. Kurt,
    Given your experience so far,do you believe the Blog GMs
    will tend to overvalue “their” players and picks? Thru seven Mock Rds and no trades?
    Do you think the real GM’s will be any more active,or is any action going to be limited to the teens and down?


  88. Mock update: At #5, Celtics to with Yi Jianlian (followed by Bill Simmons killing himself); at 6 the Bucks take Brandon Wright; At 7 the TWolves take Corey Brewer.

    My efforts to trade with Indiana are at an impass, they are demanding Odom, Bynum and the #19. No movement. Now, the Blazers are willing to make a Zach Randolph trade if Jeff Green is still around at 19. Any deals that work for you (and, by the way, Raef has two years left on his deal at $13 mil)?


  89. 88. Yes. First, it’s amock draft and making picks is fun. Second, like I said with the Indy guy, what he is balking at is the year (maybe two) of losing that would come with blowing up what he’s got, even though he admits what he’s got will not win even in the East. As much as fans and bloggers rip real GMs, I think some are more aggressive than given credit for.

    I expect some trades come the real draft night.


  90. Kurt,

    What have you heard about this Sean Williams kid? There’s a write-up in SLAM that likens him to Ben Wallace and Dennis Rodman, and it sounds as if his mental state may be comparable to one or both.

    If we trade Kwame/Bynum and/or Lamar, we will need help up front. Then again, if we trade Bynum and Lamar, netting only Jermaine, I may have to squint my eyes and pretend the Clippers are wearing Purple and Gold next year. Or break out the Nick Van Exel – Eddie Jones VHS tapes …


  91. I mean – guys – I’m no expert, but Jermaine is seriously injury-prone, and the peak of his career seems to have come 4-5 years ago.

    Sure, a move to the Lakers might revitalize his career, but if we lose Lamar, I don’t think it’ll keep Kobe from moving on in a year or two. (And wouldn’t that be the point of trading a key piece like Lamar?)


  92. Are we trading Kobe if the JO trade doesn’t fly? I hope not.

    I’m more and more convinced that the problems with Lakers now have to with the disfunctionality of the Buss’s as a family unit. The son’s out of control and knows nothing about the game of basketball. Dr. Buss is understandably tired, he’s been doing this for a long time. At some point, you want to enjoy LA and spend your hard earned money on a blond, a Mercedes, and a ton of liquor.

    Dr. Buss, keep Kobe, and sell the team to a well to do Angelino that has the blue and gold in his blood and wants to actively build the great championship contender that this city deserves.


  93. warren (philippines) June 14, 2007 at 9:02 am

    I like how Nate described the Suns w/ his writeup. D’Antoni is such an arrogant head that sells his team more than their actual value.

    I do believe there is something w/ Indiana. Its just a matter of how much we are willing to go for JO. I believe we will be a better team w/ JO already but as to how far we go, depends on the support we get from “the other guys”.


  94. Where is all of this JO injury stuff coming from? He has had one year where he missed a ton of time due to injury and that was in 05-06. In 04-05, injuries caused him to miss 23 games, but the other 15 came from the Ron Artest brawl. Last season, he only played in 69 games. But the Pacers didn’t play him the last two games of the season, so he really only missed 11 games last season. Missing 11 games is pretty normal for an NBA player…

    And remember, he was pretty much called upon to carry the Pacers. He wouldn’t be asked to do that in L.A. We would need him more to be a secondary scorer and just focus more on defense than anything else…


  95. And Sean Williams is the truth. But with his attitude/weed issues, I doubt the Lakers would draft him. Sometimes you have to make bold moves like that, but the Lakers have shown over the years that they really aren’t about making bold moves.


  96. For your draft pick I’d suggest Green,Florida PG,if he’s still there. Second choice would be whoever is the best defensive player available.
    Green,as I don’t think anyone in that spot is going to have a major impact on the season,and having 2 good young points is not a problem to me. Let them fight it out in camp,preseason and thru yr in practice and “loser” leaves town as there are always teams looking for PGs.


  97. Only thing is Green needs to learn how to shoot the spot up three. That’s a must for a Guard in this system.

    Speaking of guards that could work for this system…



  98. Nate – I was just about to post the exact same link you just posted about Duhon :). If Kupchak doesn’t at least TRY to get Duhon, then he is not doing his job right. Everybody and their mothers knows that we need a PG who can play solid D. Now that one is on the trading block, I believe we must do whatever necessary to get him here.


  99. Somebody please tell me this is a joke!



  100. Mock trade updates: 1) I am trying to swing a three team deal that brings Duhon and JO to LA, but I’m not highly optimistic.

    But, the Blazers may be up for Chopperdave’s trade, Either:

    Odom/Kwame/Pick for Jack/Randolph/LaFrentz


    Odom/Kwame/pick for Jack/Randolph/Miles/Dickau.


    By the way, I’m going to put up a new post later today, some of this trade talk may move over to the next topic but it should continue.


  101. Kurt, please…NO Darius MILES!


  102. Kurt,

    I love LO and admire him greatly for what he did last year, but I think it’s time he’s moved (based on keeping Kobe). He just hasn’t been consistent enough.

    And, the more I think about it, the more I would love to see JO in a Lakers uni.

    The thing is, I don’t want to include Kwame in the deal. I know that sounds strange but I like the defensive potential of a JO-Kwame 4-5 set-up and I think Kwame in a contract year could do well.

    Plus, that $9 million expiring gets even more valuable at the trade deadline.

    However, I really don’t want to have to take back Tinsley. I just think he’s a horrible fit in LA and his contract isn’t very good.

    As for the draft, I don’t think we’ll have a pick, but I definitely like the idea of Sean Williams or Jason Smith. I think we’ll be losing a minimum of two frontcourt guys in any big trade so big, athletic guys would be great.


  103. 102)

    Couldn’t have said that quick enough!!!


  104. Kurt-

    HEavens to betsy, don’t touch Miles with a twenty foot stick!!!


  105. I sort of felt the same way about Miles, although Dickau made it tempting, so I put the idea out there. Seems I’m not the only one not so big on Miles.


  106. I don’t know if you guys have noticed but Chris Duhon is on the block!


  107. I think that it’s pretty pathetic and direspectful that our management is dangling Lamar Odom out there to any taker. Everyone in the league knows how desperate the Lakers are now.

    I can’t stand what Jimmy Buss has done to this team. Get this moron out of the front office. What a mockery he has made this team.


  108. The only problem is they’re (the Bulls) probably going to ask for too much for a player like Duhon! The Bulls need scoring and there is really nobody other than LO and Kobe that the bulls really want or need. They would be better severed making a big splash in free agency the following year. I’d say in order to get him they’d have to throw in Kwame’s expiring contract exchange for Duhon and Sefalosha


  109. 106. am I crazy, or wouldn’t we rather have dickau and Miles (7.7×4) than Lafrentz (11.5×3) ??? even if it doesn’t work for us… a guy who can run and jump might be moveable… no one will want Raef until the trade deadline right before his contract expires.


  110. Miles is reportedly fat now too. Another reason Portland will always have a hard time landing free agents: the town is so boring people report your daily late-nite visits to baskin robbins. Grab Raef and hope he reverts back to weak-side shotblocking three point stroking Raef.

    Personally I’d rather have Pargo over Duhon if we are able to keep Farmar. If we lose Farmar, then we should add Duhon.


  111. I love the possiblity of a Farmar/Duhon combination. Those guys are both intense and heady. They’ll play balls out for the entire time they are in the game. It would be a very good two headed monster at the PG.


  112. 112) Couldn’t agree more.

    I might go into shock watching 48 minutes of hard play from the PG spot, but I’d learn to adapt quickly.


  113. skigi @100

    It may be a joke, but they played the audio to a video on 570 where Kobe says the quote at the top of that website and worse.

    This is assuming it is real. The guys behind it think they can get as much as 20k for it from someone. If it is real, the Lakers may want to consider bidding because it seems to be pretty humiliating to them and would also seem to close the door on Kobe coming back.

    You guys haven’t heard of this?


  114. My only problem with a Farmar/Duhon combo is the shooting at the one, but if we had a good shooting 3, that would offset my concerns. If we were to have Farmar and Duhon we couldn’t get away with Luke at the 3. I feel we need a couple dead-eye shooters to put around Kobe.


  115. I’m thinking that Farmar will be working on his shooting A LOT in the offseason. In fact, I’m sure he’s on a court somewhere right now shooting 3’s and mid-range jumpers.


  116. Agree with you on the shooting aspect. But I know Farmar is in the gym working on his game every day, while Duhon shot 36% from three, which ain’t bad. My main concern for the Lakers is improving on the defensive side of the ball. Even though they can get better on offense, they were top ten on that side of the ball, yet near the bottom of the league on the defensive side of things. Pargo can fill it up though (39% from 3).


  117. 115) I think Mo Peterson with the MLE or part thereof would be nice pick-up for the 3. Then there’s always the option of Vlad starting at the 3 (where he originally was signed to play).

    I think tough on the ball defense is more important out of the PG position than anything on the offensive end.


  118. John R, I just emailed those guys. Fill me in on what’s going on…


  119. DrewBoy/Nate- I completley agree, we need a doberman at the top of our defense, but I think the more pressing defensive need is at the 3. I like James Posey and Pietrus. I feel the perimeter defense can be improved most with a wing defender, look at what Bowen does for Tony Parker, Bell for Steve Nash, Battier for McGrady.

    We need a guy who can move Kobe off the best perimeter player and that requires versatility. A bigger wing defender can offer that and Pargo isn’t exactly a bad defender. He played big minutes for B-Scott and Skiles, two guys who don’t give minutes to people who don’t defend.

    Last, I kinda see Vlad a 4 on this team, although we didn’t get a chance to see him at the 3 last year enough to know.


  120. I see where you’re going Kwame. If we got a lock down at the three, I could see that working. But if the plan is to keep Walton there, we definitely need someone defensive oriented at the one…


  121. POrtland is desperate to unload Miles who has an injury prob-bad back? Instead of Dickau,Martel Webster for his outside shot and fast break finishing ability. He’s the price for unloading Miles-and promptly buy out Miles,dead cap space,but if you can get Jack,Webster,Randolph and Miles(who’s price to get rest),not too bad.