Odom, Summer League Notes, Part Deux

Kurt —  July 15, 2009

Game 5 - Magic vs. Lakers
Here’s what I think is the ultimate truth about the Lakers/Odom negotiations: They still need each other.

Unless Odom wants to walk away for the MLE — and he doesn’t, he already turned up his nose at more money than that from the Lakers — Odom and the Lakers have to agree on whatever deal gets done.

Here are the most-likely outcomes: 1) Odom signs some kind of deal with the Lakers; 2) Odom’s agent sets up a sign-and-trade with Miami (it will not be Dallas, the Lakers will not send Odom to a potential title contender in the West). Either of those options involves the Lakers signing off on the deal. So, to borrow Tom Ziller’s line, this is really more or less that the Lakers and Odom have hit the pause button on negotiations. They are going to have to talk again. Right now it sounds as if Buss and others are almost letting this get personal, a cooling off period could be good.

Don’t delude yourself into thinking the Lakers are better off without Odom — the best proof is that last season he led the Lakers in +/-, the Lakers outscored opponents by 16.4 points per 48 minutes when he was on the floor. Second was Kobe at 12.1. The simple truth is that good things happened for the Lakers when he was on the floor. He came up big in the playoffs. His versatility cannot easily be replaced. There are some intriguing pieces on the Heat roster (Chalmers, for one) but any move the Lakers make here is not going to make a title more likely.

Can the Lakers win a title without Odom? Yes, but the margin of error is now non-existent. Bynum has to be healthy and playing at his peak. Artest has to fit in swimmingly. Bench guys like Sasha and Jordan cannot struggle for long stretches. Everything has to go right. And that’s a lot to ask.

• By the way, people keep talking about the state tax issue in Texas and Florida. That is not as big a deal as you think — the players are taxed per game at the rates in the states they play. Meaning, when the Heat come and play the Lakers, Wade et al get taxed at California rates. When the Lakers go to Dallas, they get taxed at Texas rates. Basically, to play in a state with no income tax impacts only 50% of your checks, and while there are some savings it’s not as dramatic as some lead to believe.

• Watched two Lakers Summer League games now and here’s what I’ve learned about Adam Morrison: His knee is healthy. Everything else that he has shown we already knew.

When he is given space, his shot is still pure. Part of the challenge for Morrison in Summer League is that while his role should be spot-up shooter, he is the guy expected to create offense in Vegas. He is crowded by defenders and is having to create off the dribble, which he cannot do at the NBA (or even Summer League) level. When he is just asked to shoot — Tuesday there was one inbounds play where he comes off two screens and gets a baseline 18-foot catch-and-shoot — he looks good. But when asked here to show off more dimensions to his game he struggles.

The question going forward a simple one: Come training camp can he prove he can play to his strengths 10 minutes a night? When out with the second unit and Odom/Artest/Gasol draws the double and kicks out, does he understand his role well enough to get to the open space then can he drain the open shot. Two years ago Sasha played that role well, and if he gets his shot back it could be hard for Morrison to get the minutes (Sasha is the better defender). But that is all that Morrison is going to be — a 10-minute-a-night gunner. Don’t think the scoring totals from Vegas means anything more.

• James Harden is smooth. Strong first step and made some nice plays coming off the high pick, can finish in traffic, has the great J. On several occasions he was the outlet and led the fast break. Pretty much loved everything he did, and he is going to be a great fit next to Westbrook. I think I underestimated him at Arizona State but as Ty from lakers.com pointed out, in college he was constantly tripled teamed because, well, who else did you fear on that squad?

• Toney Douglas, the Florida State guard the Lakers drafted in the first round then traded to the Knicks, impressed. He was confident and making smart decisions with the ball, had some nice drive and kicks, just ran the offense like a pro (although much slower than D’Antonio must have wanted, it was basically an “at least 7 seconds” system). He had a rough game shooting (2-11) but nobody thought that was the trend. He’s not super athletic, he’s not going to be the next Chris Paul, but he will be a serviceable, smart backup PG for years in the league.

• Another guy in that same mold is Ty Lawson, who will be backing up Billups in Denver this year. Smart choices, especially in transition. Real floor general.

• Eric Gordon and Blake Griffin make a deadly pick-and-roll combo. Often bigs coming out of college are not very good at setting picks, but Griffin is a wall. Gordon hugs tighter off the pick than most guards than explodes, and is great at keeping his defender on his hip. Blake rolls hard to the basket and has great hands. They are going to score a lot of points with that next season.

• Tweet of the day from David Thorpe (and expressed what I thought exactly): I’m not sure what Hasheem means in his native language, but I’d guess it’s not “plays with fire”.

• Maybe the two best dunks I’ve seen here came from Anthony Randolph in one game (a game where he scored 42 to tie the Vegas Summer League record). First he got the ball on the wing (left alone) and made a big one dribble-move, the help defender rotated over late and Randolph pushed him out of the way with a Dwight Howard like move and threw down the tomahawk. Later in the same game Stephen Curry is leading the break and does the off-the-backboard pass to a trailing Randolph. The guy can finish.

• By the way, the other two guys to score 42 in a Summer League game? Von Wafer and Marcus Banks. That should tell you all you need to know about the level of play in Vegas.


to Odom, Summer League Notes, Part Deux

  1. This is the rare time when some speculation is allowed: Basically, who do we want if the sign and trade is going to happen? What deal works? And let’s keep it sane, no three-team moves, and the Heat are not going to give us Wade (I feel confident about that).

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  2. David Thorpe is hilarious and has been while tweeting about the Summer League. You should read what he said about DeAndre Jordan a game ago or so. It wasn’t flattering but funny nonetheless.

    I’m Mitch will sell high if sign and trade happens with Odom. That is why I am optimistic that Michael Beasley is possible along with some body to make the salaries match. Preferably James Jones.

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  3. I fear Buss is losing it in his old age.

    It’s hard for me to believe both Ariza’s and Odom’s agents are blowing it. What’s the common factor? Two different agents, two different players, one Laker front office. Hmmmm …

    I thought the idea was, make Odom an offer, then let him see what else is out there. Now, I’m hearing Buss is upset the Odom camp is talking with other teams? Cry me a river!

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  4. I would prefer just to have Odom, opposed to the sign and trade but if the sign and trade is a must I’ve heard a couple of options I wouldn’t absolutely despise:

    David Lee. Now, I’m not even sure this one is at all credible, but I’ve heard it floating around. It’s probably more of a trendy rumor because he is unsigned/L.O. has always been a target of the D’Antoni teams (at least in rumor spec). If we could land Lee for L.O. I think that is the best situation, doubt it will ever happen though.

    I wouldn’t mind a Chalmers/Haslem sign and trade, either. But it’s not as nice as a David Lee deal.

    Bottom line is I want L.O. back, and hopefully everything works out.

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  5. I am not very optimistic on what we can get from Miami in a trade for Odom – remember this is the team that in the Shaq trade in 2004 would not give back Wade (back when he was completing his rookie season – as Beasley is now – and not yet the superstar he became in 2006). I don’t see the Lakers getting Beasley.

    Separately, Beasley’s window does not correspond well to the Lakers’ window, meaning that he is 2-3 years away from contributing at a level high enough for 20-30 minutes on a top-3 contender. Thus, if Riley is desperate enough to part ways with Beasley, I see the Lakers looking for a three-way trade that would net them a more mature and ready-to-contribute player.

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  6. 3. Buss wasn’t pissed that Odom talked to other teams, but that he made no response at all to an offer on the table for a week. No counter offer, no “hey we want to think about it,” not even just a no. All the Lakers heard was radio silence. That is what irritated Buss.

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  7. If we can’t get Beasley, I say we don’t do it and Lamar can go play for Miami for the MLE and the self-righteous sense of smugness that “he showed ’em!”.

    Except that Lamar will probably be saying, “huh? wha happened?”, while his agent will be saying, “Lamar, they gave me no choice. They totally screwed you.”

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  8. If we’re going to lose Odom, lets get someone to round out the team for the long-term…point guard is our iffy spot. Somehow get Hinrich? Maybe go after Joe Smith, Gooden, Wilcox with our minimum? Do we still have the Bi minimum?

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  9. 5. Completely agree with the Lakers window not meshing with Beaseley’s. Pairing him with Morrison’s expiring and Yue’s non-guaranteed contracts for a more mature player seems like a better way to go.

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  10. “What’s the common factor? Two different agents, two different players, one Laker front office. Hmmmm …”

    Just a thought here – mentioned in the previous thread. How about the CBA is going to be renegotiated and salaries will undoubtedly go down.

    Agents are trying to get their clients their money now, while there is still good money to be got.

    When this happens mistakes will become more numerous – from both the team’s and players’ perspectives.

    Just remember, the Lakers have 3 high salaried players and this number will not go down over the next few years, unless the Lakers massively screw up. The Lakers do not want 4 high salaried players on the books, as they will be unable to sign enough cannon fodder to fill up the team roster without paying huge – and I mean huge – luxury tax to the Donald Sterling’s of the world. Does this sound much like a Jerry Buss (or family) move?

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  11. Beasley has big upside as a scorer off the bench.

    Odom and Farmar in a sign and trade for David Lee? (not the agent).

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  12. Sandwich Artist July 15, 2009 at 1:35 pm

    Off topic, but what happened to Dex’s KB 24-8 blog? I liked reading him tearing into Bill Simmons.

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  13. Sandwich Artist July 15, 2009 at 1:36 pm

    We used the bi-annual minimum on Shannon Brown.

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  14. Basically I don’t think a combination of Haslem/Chalmers offsets what Odom brings to the table.The trouble with a 2 for 1 is we need to find minutes for the 25-30 productive minutes Odom gave us every night and 15 mins each for Chalmers/Haslem isn’t going to cut it. Although I must add Chalmers is at the very top of Triangle-ready PG’s in the Lig in terms of shooting ability and basketball IQ. Mario could be the successor to Fish’s legacy of tough D and timely threes.

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  15. Maybe the Bulls, since they were already looking at Boozer to fill there 4 postion. Sign LO at 9 mil, combine with Morrisons contract, inturn we recieve Hinrich and Tyrus Thomas( salaries combined off by about 200,000). LO would not be traded to a team in our conference, the Bulls need a veteran PF to play along with B. Miller and Noah, and Hinrich would definitely be an answer to our point problems now and in the future. T. Thomas will be a restricted FA after next year, so if he doesnt fit the triangle then he is an expiring contract as well. Sounds better than the trade with Miami, we already have Artest and Walton at the 3, so where would Beasley fit in. He is not long or strong enough to play at 4, he is more of a jump shooter. If where going to get taxed why not look to greatly improve one postion and look for a fill in at PF, this trade would satisfy all needs.

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  16. From Ric Bucher’s Twitter feed (both in the last hour): First, there was “Color me wrong on LO: I don’t think they’re going to figure it out. LO asks “please let me have 3 yrs/27m” or Lakers are moving on.” Followed shortly by “Would expect this: LO back to LAL or not will be decided in next 24 hours.”

    FWIW. He hasn’t been particularly accurate before when it comes to the Lakers, so take it with a grain of salt.

    As for S&T deals for Odom, Beasley/Haslim/#1 pick from Miami is intriguing. NY has a *ton* of expiring deals which presents all sorts of opportunities: Hughes (no thanks) at $13.7M, Al Harrington at $10M, Cuttino at $9.5M, Darko at $7.5M, Duhon at $6M, Nate at $2.9M and Lee at $2.7M (the last two are qualifying offers). We could do a S&T with Lee at a 4-5 year deal at $5M per, and get a 1-year rental of Duhon at $6M in exchange for LO and Farmar. That would give us a young hustler off the bench at the 4/5, and a strong defender and possible PG of the future to assess.

    Still would just rather have LO back though.

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  17. On a side note, Tyreke Evans is beasting right now as a scoring point in the D League. Not sure if he’d be able to out-power the competition in the Lig (the aforementioned examples of Sean Banks and Von Wafer being case in points). But man, if Westphal designed a dribble-drive system like Frank had done in NJ with Harris and VC, Evans could be a sleeper pick for ROY.

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  18. i do not want odom to leave us..at all.

    but if we had to do a s&t why cant we get hinrich/ty thomas

    anthony randolph/azubuike

    i may be delusional but those seem awesome.

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  19. Kurt, how do you know all this stuff? Seriously, your knowledge of how the league works is top-notch. Writers all over the Internet are bleating about the state tax issue, this is the first place I found out that players are taxed in the states they play in. Props on research or just plain knowledge.

    The Heat won’t give up Beasley for an aging Odom. In any case, Haslem and Chalmers fit better into what we want to do. Chalmers in the triangle would be perfect. A good shooter and absolute ball hawk, still growing. Haslem’s dropped off a lot, but he brings some versatility defensively the way Odom does. Clearly not on Lamar’s level, but he can guard the quicker PFs and still scraps for boards. I’m not as impressed with him as I was in recent years, but as a backup he might have his uses.

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  20. Why would the Heat give up Beasley? I don’t get it. I know there are questions about work ethic, but I don’t think an Odom-Beasley swap puts them into Finals, and I don’t see that this will convince Wade to stay.

    On the Laker side, I think if Beasley could handle being a role player, it might not be a bad place for him to refine his game, backing up Bynum/Gasol/Artest. But I would think Phil wouldn’t want to train a rookie for his last year on the bench…

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  21. If anyone’s expecting an awesome defensive line-up with Hinrich in the line-up, well there’s some bad news. Hinrich’s shown a marked defensive slippage from his days of single covering D-Wade in the 06 and 07 playoffs. At age 28,in his ostensible prime, Hinrich has a two year average defensive rating of 109.Meanwhile Fish at age 34 (way way past his prime) whose defense we’ve routinely lambasted holds a defensive rating of,you guessed it, 109.

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  22. They could possibly do a sign and trade with miami for jermaine o’neal. Throw in a couple of players like sun yue, adam morrison or luke walton. Lamar Odom is a back up. Lamar Odom is valuing himself so high because he’s relying on the fact that andrew bynum is going to be hurt again. People can say what they want, but when healthy Andrew Bynum is consistent and a force at times. But Jermaine averaged 13 and 7 in 30 minutes last year. Similiar to odom. Jermaine is a better defensive player than odom. But the issue with Jermaine O’Neal is his health. But the lakers have the one of the best training staffs and they know how to get players ready to play. We also already have Josh Powell who has talent and can give the lakers a good 15 minutes off the bench a night. The lakers need good back up center rather than a back up power forward. But because of Gasol who can play at both positions the lakers can take either position.

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  23. Kurt,

    If we must indicate players to trade for, there’s Hinrich from the Bulls (3 yr. contract) or Brad Miller. I doubt that the Bulls would go more than three years.

    From Miami, it would be Beasley + and Lamar might get 5 years. For the +, the Lakers might want Haslem, the Heat might offer Blount.

    But . . .there are multiteam deals in which the Lakers might just get a trade exception (like Orlando) or an apparently “forbidden” player from the Western Conference (use your imagination).

    Portland could find $50 million or more for 5 years, and they would love to take Lamar away from the Lakers without compensation–but then they’d have him for 5 years. Doesn’t seem to be much of a fit.

    But . . . .don’t be too quick to forecast next season. Remember what happened to the Nuggets last year when they gave away Camby. Less can be more.

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  24. Why didnt the lakers/rockets
    sign n trade ariza
    n artest. Wouldve gave the lakers more options. If odom doesnt resign trade for a pg (hinrich) and sign
    rasho with the bi-annual.

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  25. I don’t want Nate Robinson or Tyrus Thomas on this team. Robinson because he’s too short and a ball hog, Thomas because he barely tries. Robinson would be more of a defensive liability than Fisher, and that’s pretty tough. Tyrus Thomas reminds me a lot of another famous Thomas, Tim Thomas. Watch a couple of Bulls games and tell me if you see him run full speed, ever, because I sure haven’t.

    Frankly, if we’re going to deal for Chalmers, we need to deal Farmar. No way there’s enough room on the team for 3 young point guards vying for playing time.

    I don’t see any really enticing deals out there for sign-and-trade, so either LO is taking LA’s reduced offer or he’s eating his MLE elsewhere.

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  26. What I’m really genuinely curious to know is – what is Jeff Schwartz’s line of reasoning here?

    “Let’s see – no other team has been offering Lamar a 5 year, $50 million deal. Let’s see what happens if I stop returning phone calls from Mitch Kupchak. Looking at recent history, like with Trevor Ariza and Shaq – I think that I can bully Jerry Buss into giving me the money I want. “Let’s see – no other team has been offering Lamar a 5 year, $50 million deal. Let’s see what happens if I stop returning phone calls from Mitch Kupchak and try to embarass the front office into giving us $50 mil. Looking at recent history, like with Trevor Ariza and Shaq – I am pretty sure that I can bully Jerry Buss into giving me the money I want since he does that *all* the time. If not I can always tell Jerry: ‘nyaah, nyaah, we’ll just go play on an inferior team for less money.'””

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  27. i fail at copy/paste 🙁

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  28. If it is Odom’s intention to not settle for less than 10 million, I’m really confused as to why NY,Miami or even Chicago would really be interested in him at that price, with the cap set to fall to about 50 million in 2010, when each of these franchises have a stated intention of signing Wade/Bosh/CrabDribble to a max? 50% of your salary tied into one of these superstars+Odom (in Chi’s case + Rose) isn’t the path to a championship, IMO.

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  29. Sounds like the Lakers thought they were making a final offer to close the deal, and Odom’s camp decided to hold out for more. Given that Odom can’t get more than the MLE without the Lakers help at this point, I can see where the Lakers would start to get pissed.

    With the luxury tax situation, I’m not sure who the Lakers could get in a sign-and-trade that they want to pay at double rate. LO fit with the team, knew the offense, and was (supposedly) willing to take a discount; a player acquired via S&T is unlikely to bring any of that.

    If the Lakers let LO go, a repeat becomes much more fragile, but that’s the nature of the salary cap era.

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  30. Lakers will be stupid if they give lamar 5 years 10 million. He’s not worth 10 million at the age of 30 and he definitely won’t be worth 10 million at 35. Lamar relies on his athletic ability to score, rebound and defend. When thats gone in a couple of years he’s going to be a 10 minute a game type of players. As laker fans we all have an attachment to players, but we have to realize this is a business. And like Kurt keeps mentioning that the lakers need Odom more than he needs the Lakers is so far from the truth. Lamar goes to any other team, Dallas, Portland, Miami. Good teams but far from championships. He’ll just be an slightly above average player but inconsistent player on a good team. He stays with the lakers and wins championships he’s a good player on championship team that will be known and respected throughout the world. If bynum can stay healthy the lakers really don’t need Odom. But the question is, can bynum stay healthy? But the lakers should try to do a sign and trade with the Rockets and get scola. But that definitely won’t happen because the rockets will not give scola up.

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  31. 25. Because Ariza got more than a 20% raise, he is considered a BYC player and his we would only be able to count half his salary towards an equal trade.

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  32. As good as Scola is I can’t stand the guy, haha. Not sure I could even have a change of heart if he signed to the Lakers.

    Plus, never happening.

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  33. alex, agreed, sign and trades don’t work too well unless we get a really good player AND relief through a non-guaranteed contract or the like. Problem is that the non-guaranteed contract has to be this year (think Stackhouse). Thus, I don’t see how a sign and trade would be palatable to Dr. Buss.

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  34. Sign and trade for Jermaine Oneal/Chalmers/James Jones and any Expiring contracts for Odom/Luke/Sasha/Jordan Farmar. Get rid of all the lakers bad contracts in one swoop. Not realistic tho Miami wants to have money free in 2010. Dream scenario tho!

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  35. RE: Tax Issue

    I read somewhere a few months ago that CA is one of (if not) the only states that taxes out of town players.

    Any CPAs out there, know for sure?

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  36. I’m not sure if portland will be willing to sign Odom for the contract of 50 million over 5 years because they are going to have to resign Aldridge and Roy pretty soon and Roy is a max type of player and Aldridge is close to it. So unless odom gets the same type of deal that Milsap gets where the chunk of money is up front and the salary is around 5 million a year, I really don’t see odom going there. Odom’s options are limited and will get a no more than the MLE if the lakers don’t do a sign and trade. Right now the lakers hold all the cards. The lakers have royal flush and odom expects the lakers to fold. Not going to happen.

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  37. In the midst of all this, relook at drrayeye’s post at #24.

    Denver got better by letting Camby go – and we all tarred and feathered them last year.

    Now I don’t claim Lamar is an exact duplicate of this, but Camby was popular on that team and they did seem to be giving up their best defensive player, but got better anyway.

    Of course they signed two players on the cheap, but we could do that too. The key is to know which players to sign. I posit that one is Shanwow. I bet Mitch is really churning the waters trying to find a fit right now – just in case.

    Lamar is not the answer, just a key piece. Stay come, this too will pass.

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  38. What about Ricky Rubio and Ryan Gomes for Odom and Farmar?

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  39. When discussing S&T deals, realize that Odom is going to have sign off on the deal. So I wouldn’t start looking at scenarios where LO is being shipped off to Minnesota, because that’s not happening. I think the only real possibilities that he would consider are the two that his camp have thrown out (Dallas, Miami), as well as NY (where he’s from). Portland and Phoenix, but I doubt Mitch is all that excited about dealing within the West.

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  40. Whatever we get, a 4 or 5 must be part of the deal. I’m not sold on Artest productively playing at the 4. If Mitch (has he not earned our collective confidence?) can work a multi-team deal almost anything is possible. Outside of that, my top 3 would be Thomas, Lee, Haslem in that order.

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  41. Latest tweets from Bucher re the Odom situation (in order of when sent out):

    “Just an FYI: if Lakers do abandon LO, they aren’t doing any sign&trades. Nobody out there they consider comparable they’d want to get.” (18 minutes ago)

    “Where LO goes if not LA: Miami or Por, although the latter has shown no interest. FYI, he didn’t reject 3yr/27m, he asked for a 4th yr.” (11 minutes ago)

    “It’s like this: Phil wants him, but LO has to make nice w/Dr. Buss, who’s ticked LO didn’t jump at what Buss sees as generous offer.”(7 minutes ago)

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  42. Brian,
    Sounds like a good cop / bad cop scenario to me.

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  43. Allan – Brazil July 15, 2009 at 3:47 pm

    Odom for Chalmers and Haslem, straight up.
    Then sign Shelden Willians for the Vet Minimum.

    Don’t know if it’s possible, guess not. But if Miami would do it, I’m in favor.

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  44. Coffee is For Closers July 15, 2009 at 3:55 pm

    The state tax issue is a bit misstated.

    Players residing in California are taxed on all income, regardless of where the earnings occur. The do receive a state tax credit for any taxes paid to other states.

    Non-resident players are also taxed on their earnings allocable to games played in CA, and that is pretty much uniform for all states with income taxes.

    So how are players affected who are residents of no-income tax states? They’ll pay no state taxes on home games, and only state taxes allocable to road games in states that have income taxes. We’re probably talking about maybe 50 games with no state taxes for players that live in states with no income taxes.

    CA’s top rate is 9.3% (for now, at least). At $10M/season, that’s $930,000 in state taxes (partially mitigated as this is a deduction for federal tax purposes). For simplicity sake, lets say the Florida player earning the same salary and paying the same state rate for all away games vs. teams with state income taxes would pay $372,000 in state taxes (32/82 x 10,000,000 x 9.3%), the difference between the 2 being $558,000.

    35. CA is one of the most agressive about going after atheletes and musicians, but as mentioned, if you work in state with an income tax, you’re liable for taxes in that state regardless of residency.

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  45. Thanks Kurt for including that bit about the state income tax. That was driving me nuts (I posted a huge long bit on the $ totals in the last blogpost near the end.) It was also driving me nuts what people said about Ariza, that his MLE deal was better than even a $7 million offer from the Lakers (it’s not).

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  46. Any chance that LO is just waiting for the Boozer to Chicago deal to go through, for the Jazz to match the Blazers offer on Millsap and for the Blazers to spend their Turko-dollars on LO?

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  47. If LO wants to go to Portland, then so be it. Good luck trying to live in a sunshine city….that city only avg’s 66 days of sunshine a year!…haha

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  48. Coffee is For Closers July 15, 2009 at 4:28 pm

    Its funny, if its Miami that Odom is pointing to as his next best option. Hasn’t Lamar already proven that he if he’s your 2nd best player, you’re really not that good? I know the heat want to show wade they’re trying to improve the team around him, but tying $10M – 5 years into LO sounds like they’d be financially strangling their cap space to me.

    btw, i have a more thorough review of state tax law, but its in moderation limbo.

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  49. Aevi,

    Portland can only offer up to $9 million starting salary a year if they renounce a couple Euro players. That’s roughly identical to our offer.

    As for sign-and-trade scenarios, Miami seems to be the only party with enough interest and enough trade chips to make this worthwhile unless we want to get Hinrich from Chicago.

    Miami could offer Beasley along with Blount’s or Haslem’s expiring contracts (they would prefer Blount naturally) and perhaps a first rounder to sweeten the package. Miami has to do something to convince Wade that they’re serious about contending, as Wade isn’t signing his extension unless he’s getting a clear indication from Riley that the team is moving in a competitive direction. That said, Riley has held his 2010 cap space as gold for the entire year, so I’m not sure why he moves for LO unless he can get Boozer for Haslem (there’s a trade exception somewhere there off the top of my head). That’s a fairly good starting five in the East and they’ll still have a decent amount of cap space when Boozer’s and O’Neal’s contracts come off the cap (and they’ll own Boozer’s Bird rights as well). The logic is there, but it’s doubtful whether Riley actually bites on it.

    As for Chicago, I love Hinrich, but the only way I can see the Laker management accepting this is if Noah or Thomas is thrown into the deal. I know they’re willing to part with Thomas (who I don’t think we really want in the first place), but I’m unsure about Noah.

    The only other party that has interest is Dallas, but they have literally no trade chips that we would bend over for. Howard is injury-prone and getting on in years and we already have a big crowd at the three. Terry isn’t worth depleting our frontcourt for and he’s liable to decline also.

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  50. The Lakers may not get Michael Beasley and others for Odom, but that is where I would start my negotiations. From that point, I would just work my way to a happy median. Three team trade would probably be in the best interest of the Lakers if they can’t get Michael Beasley. Haslem, James Jones, or Chalmers just don’t do anything for the Lakers. Those players could be pieces to a huge trade during the season.

    Personally, if the Lakers can’t Michael Beasley, they might as well let Odom walk if he doesn’t return to the team. Try to sign free agents to the veteran minimum. Chris Wilcox comes to mind.

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  51. 35. PJ,

    All states tax athletes from out of town for playing games on their floor. So if the Knicks play the Lakers, all Knicks players that played or received a salary that game would be taxed at California rates for an amount equal to 1/82nd of their annual salary. This is considered a day’s work done out of state. So essentially at the end of the tax year all athletes receive tax paperwork from every state they ever played in for the year (this is why no athlete even with adequate tax knowledge would try to do their own taxes).

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  52. Josh Powell is enough Chris Wilcox for me…

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  53. http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/news;_ylt=A2KIPGskaF5K4UgBThC8vLYF?slug=ap-jazz-boozer&prov=ap&type=lgns

    boozer sounded pretty certain that he’s gonna be traded.

    http://www.deseretnews.com/article/705316986/Utah-Jazz-shop-Boozer-still-want-Millsap.html

    and even if he doesn’t, the jazz may match millsap anyway. they have ’til the end of the week to decide. however unlikely, there’s still a realistic chance that this can set off a chain reaction ending up in LO taking blazers’ money.

    if that does happen, is it better to just let LO walk, or to s&t for inferior parts?

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  54. Even if the Lakers let Odom walk, can they really sign FAs? I was under the impression they’d still be far over the cap. We’ve used our MLE and biannual (most sources say so), so what exceptions are left?

    I still push for a sign and trade. I don’t know if Miami has a trade exception or not, but if they do, just getting back a couple draft picks and a young player like Chalmers would be worth it. Riley would be out of his mind to trade Beasley for Odom. It is Riley, with his win-now-the-future-be-damned mentality, so who knows.

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  55. is it better to let LO walk, or to s&t for inferior replacement parts?

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  56. 49 – If the Lakers let Odom walk and are still over the cap, the only advantage is lightening Buss’s wallet. Doesn’t do much for us fans. From my perspective, even inferior parts or draft picks are better than nothing. Not my money though.

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  57. Snoopy2006 – Veteran’s Minimum. Its a stretch that they can any talent with that, but its all they have.

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  58. If we did do a sign and trade for Odom don’t think we would be recieving equal immediate value (no one outside of Lebron does what Odom does for a team from a versatility standpoint) So saying that I think the best idea is for younger prospects who can play now fairly well off the bench and develope.

    Knicks
    I really like Douglas and Hill. Hill has much better post moves than advertised and is very fast for a powerforward with good touch. And douglas looks like a solid point guard (haven’t we wanted one of those.)
    both also play great defense in different manners.

    Miami
    Chalmers another solid up and coming guard almost reminds me of fisher but a tad smaller and quicker. And Haslem, (gives us a solid if not spectacular PF off the bench kind of like Turioff plus)

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  59. I’m not sure how many people follow twitter, but it’s been buzzing with LO stuff all day. I don’t know how credible Bucher is anymore given the whole debacle with the Kobe story in 07, but, he seems to be saying LA offered 3 yrs (9-10 per) and LO asked for the 4th year. He insists that’s the hangup…the 4th year. Pincus at HoopsHype has been reporting much the same thing. Even the ppl who broke the story yesterday, Ramona Shelburne/Elliot Teaford from the Daily News, seem to be unsure of whether LA offered the 3/27 or 4/36.

    Regarding the sign and trade, read a few things from Bucher and HoopsHype that suggest LA has no interest in a sign and trade unless they get blown away as they do not see anyone remotely close to LO available…seems they were going to contact Wilcox, Gooden, and Joe Smith possibly (can’t remember where I read those 3 names mentioned but I saw it earlier in my obsessive compulsive search for LO news earlier).

    If the hangup truly is the 4th yr, I’d do it no questions…but I’d probably lean toward saying something like this is take it or leave it. I’d hate to lose LO, don’t even want to comprehend it, but at some point, you have to stop chasing people around. It’s one thing to overpay another teams’ FA as it usually takes that to get someone to leave a comfortable situation all things being equal, but overpaying your own FA’s has bit us before (even if I’d probably have done it for at least LO and possibly Trevor had I been worth billions…like Buss supposedly is).

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  60. I don’t think the breakdown in negotiations has anything to do with emotions. Odom’s agent tried a typical cutthroat negotiating tactic: agree to terms based on one set of conditions, then demand the conditions be changed to ones that would suggest a lower price. Specifically, negotiate an annual salary based on a 3 year commitment, then ask for more years. Rescinding the offer is an appropriate response, because if he wants more years, he needs to take less money.

    The Lakers’ best move now is to call his bluff. They tried the “feel good” route of paying him more than anyone (except Portland) could offer as a nod to his value to the team. But he’s playing hardball. So here’s the hardball rules: If the Lakers offer you 7 per year for 5 years you will have to either say “yes” or take a pay cut (or go to Portland). Period. Your move.

    The downside is losing Lamar for nothing, or being forced into a sign-and-trade with Miami (yuck). No mistake, that’s a downer. But paying Lamar 50 mil is not an option. It’s too bad, but there it is.

    BTW, in the sign-and-trade, take back O’Neal and dump Ammo and Sasha’s contracts. Not great, but at least there’s a consolation prize.

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  61. This is funny. Odom said he would take less money to remain with the Lakers, and how he has more than enough money. I didn’t know that when he said he’d “take less,” it meant less than his ridiculously overpaid $14 million-a-year contract. I thought he meant less than the reasonable amount.

    $9 million a year is overpaying Odom. Yeah, Lamar is versatile and a good bench player, but his only consistency is inconsistency. Why would any team pay $10 million for an inconsistent player to come off the bench?

    The Lakers will not be as competitive as the 2008-2009 team without Odom. Even adding Artest, who is still an unknown factor, the Lakers will sorely miss Odom. For me, it’s about principles, and Buss is doing the right thing. You have already raised your offer, and the player doesn’t even accept or decline the offer. I’d be pissed, too. Let Odom walk, let him go to an inferior team for a little bit more money.

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  62. @46 – fifthrune

    You need to read this article, titled: “When is a CPA as Important as Your ERA? A Comprehensive Evaluation and Examination of State Tax Issues on Professional Athletes”

    http://taxprof.typepad.com/files/cpa-era.pdf

    (I don’t know how to put up links here at FB&G.)

    In direct response to your comment, not every state taxes nonresidents. Texas and Florida are prime examples, as the don’t even tax residents. But did you know Washington and Tennessee don’t as well? And many states have agreements with other states not to tax their resident’s income when in the other state’s jurisdiction?

    Tax law is far more complicated that us bumpkins really know, but in layman’s terms, Odom (and Ariza) gain very little money by signing elsewhere to avoid state income tax.

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  63. Excellent post, as always. Great point about Lamar’s plus/minus. I’m shocked that more teams aren’t bidding on him, to be honest.

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  64. when negotiations broke down with trevor, there was a plan B. LO knows that there’s no such plan B with his negotiations, and that he can wait long enough to see for sure what the lakers final offer is, and to see if utah matches millsap and causes portland to get desperate.

    utah may match millsap even if they can’t offload boozer. they have until the end of the week to decide. if that were to happen and cause the blazers offer LO turkoglu-ish money, s&t wouldn’t even be an option.

    worst case scenario, imo.

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  65. Anthony Randolph is no Marcus Banks or Von Wafer. Kid is going to make people cry with basketball gorgeousness. I am so bitter Goo got him in our keeper league.

    LO is staying in LA. Worry all you want, I mean this would not be FB&G if we didn’t have some piece of falling sky to cry about. I just don’t see anyplace that makes any more sense financially, locations wise, or legacy wise then staying with the WCLALs. For all you bitter grape eating commentators, LO is a much better then average player in the league. Dude rebounds magnificently, he creates for others, he plays excellent D, he is long, strong, fast and versatile. He is not the alpha dog type player and that just makes him hard to evaluate by the usual standards. That said, you don’t financially cripple yourself in the salary-cap era by signing LO to the sort of contract he is asking for. He’ll sign with us and I hope he won’t have hard feelings when it’s over.

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  66. s&t: w/ charlotte for ray felton (whose contract negotiations broke down as well)?

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  67. I think we Laker fans are infected with Odomitis. Isn’t it obvious that other clubs don’t value Lamar the same way we fans do? Isn’t it obvious that Buss doesn’t value Lamar the same way we do?

    Shouldn’t that knowledge give us pause? Are we still going to jump over the Lamar cliff like lemmings?

    Perhaps, just perhaps, Lamar isn’t worth as much as the other players signing for $10M/yr. Unless I am mistaken, the Laker fans were saying just that two years ago.

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  68. Question: How do things work in a “sign and trade” scenario?

    For example, say he agrees to $10m for 5yrs and goes to the Heat. Does this mean that the Lakers have to take $10m in contracts a year? Can the Heat agree to cover $6m a year in cash payments in exchange for the Lakers picking up $4m/yr in contracts?

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  69. Craig W,
    “the Laker fans were saying just that two years ago.”

    Just one year ago.

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  70. Not that Bucher’s tweets are credible, but why on earth would the Lakers rather let Odom walk than to try and get something back, however incomparable that player may be to the Lakers? I don’t buy this addition-by-subtraction argument, which Kurt thoroughly shredded in his post – it requires too little room for error. As it is, the Lakers were nearly outmuscled by both Houston and Denver. Subtract Odom and size and depth become the main problems next year.

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  71. @61. – MannyP13

    Normal trade rules apply for sign & trades. So the Lakers must receive back $10 million in salaries, plus/minus 125% plus $100,000. Also, no more than $3 million in cash may be sent via a trade.

    So if we traded Lamar Odom in a S&T, and he will earn a flat rate of $10 million, we can take back as much as $12,600,000, of which $3 million can be cash, so atleast $9,600,000 must be player salaries.

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  72. Mannyp13 – The player involved has all the leverage, somewhat. He can dictate where he goes (in this case Dallas & Miami have been mentioned for Odom) and the players involved in the transaction. Somewhat in this case is that the Lakers can pay Odom the most money is leverage for the Lakers.

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  73. For a sign and trade, you don’t need to get the same value back, but whatever you get back should address the Lakers weaknesses (PG and backup PF/C), or else be contracts that expire next season (for future use).

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  74. Do you think that Hedo is worth more than Lamar, or bargnani is worth more than Lamar? Come on not let get this twisted. Lamar is a unique talent. Here is a 6’11 player who hit big 3’s on the biggest stage, in the biggest games, leads the break, rebounds at almost 10 pg, is not a disruptive force, a model citizen and accepts what ever role PJ wants from him. Now i will grant you that 10 mil for 5 years is excessive but why not 4 at 37.5m. Sometimes players earn the rightr to expect more. He is already taking a huge pay cut. When asked to come off the bench he did as asked and was an intergral part of this championship. Can Jermaine O’Neal lead the break or hit clutch 3’s, Has Beasley done anything other than piss Pat Riley off with his laize-faire attitude and mediocre effort, can David Lee shoot defend or handle like Lamar? No, No, No, No. How quickly you forget that when Bynum went down Lamar essentially stepped back in and did far more than hold the fort in fact, in the entire play off who would you rather see on the floor him or Drew. WE NEED LAMAR, and he knows it. In his interview he said that this si business and negotions are part fo the business of basketball. Lamar has the responsibility to get every cent he can for his family first because trust me the minute he blows out his knee no one is going to be thinking about him or his family. I love lamar i want him on this team, we need him on this team and there is no one out there that i see that is going to make the Lakers better for them taking his place. Let business be business and lets just show Lamar love he’s earned it from the fans

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  75. i don’t think the lakers should pay lamar based on what he’s done; his salary over the past few years w/ the lakers has more than compensated him for his efforts, so they don’t owe him anything. this next contract should reflect what he’ll be worth over the next 3 to 5 yrs, which is NOT $10M (or $9M, in my opinion).

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  76. “In one game, he physically challenged the Mavericks’ center because he thought he was abusive. He was just as reckless going head-to head with a master deal maker like Jerry Buss, a man who had once acquired the Chrysler Building so he could use it as a bargaining chip to buy the Lakers.

    Besides being intensely competitive, he gave away lots of time to community causes. His father was absent in childhood. Lots of other adults filled in with nurturing and support. Loyalty and demonstrated affection are two of his highest values. The more the negotiations began to resemble a high stakes poker game, the less he perceived those qualities in his employer. When negotiations stalled, he started thinking, ‘Forget them!’

    I had a conversation with him. I had gone through the same contractual thing as a player. If fact, I was negotiating my own new contract with Jerry Buss at the same time. I told him, ‘For the extra (money) you might want, don’t throw away seven years of what you have built up. You’re a highly respected player here, well known in your community. You’re in Los Angeles, you’re on a championship team, you play with players you love.

    Some other team might give you everything on your list and you’d walk into a situation that you’re going to hate. You’ve seen veterans come to this club. The only thing they can think about is that now, finally, they’re on a team that has a chance of winning a championship. Isn’t that where you want to be? Isn’t that worth something?'”
    -Pat Riley on Michael Cooper’s holdout that extended into the 1987 season.

    Lamar, see any similarities? Lamar, did you know that because Cooper made the right decision that he was able to be part of a 65-17 team that swept Denver, beat GS 4-1, swept Seattle, and throttled the Celtics 4-2 to win the Championship? Do you know that team is in the conversation for best ever? Do you know it went on to repeat in 1988, the first team to do so in 19 years? Do you know Michael Cooper is woven into the tapestry of Laker greatness?

    How ’bout you? What do you want to be about?

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  77. We need Odom and he needs us, period. He can’t go and will not go.

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  78. I think it’ll be a shame if out of ego and pride both sides end up doing something that’ll leave both worse off, a lose-lose situation. Everybody needs to chill a bit.

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  79. I don’t think we’re gonna lose him, but if we did, I think Odom for David Lee works out really well (though even though the Knicks like Odom, I have a feeling if they’re gonna pay someone, it’ll be lee). Maybe we could tempt them with Morrison’s contract as well.

    Haslem, Chalmers and a #1 pick would also be a good option (they’re not parting with Beasley).

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  80. Lamar is worth whatever the best offer is that he receives. Unless the owners are colluding (which has happened in other sports), then this is an incredibly open market – meaning all the possible buyers of his services are aware that he is available for hire. We should all be so lucky. Now he may believe he’s worth more, but so far the market doesn’t agree with him.

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  81. 3+2 (player option) should be fair, if the amount is on the 7mil range for the first three and 6 mil range for the latter two.

    anyway, i’m willing to wait and see without giving my two cents now 😉

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  82. i say we give odom a final 7×3 offer.. or a S&T @8/9×4 w/miami for beasley++.. buss did the played nice and tried to reward odom for his sacrifices.. we have tremendous leverage because there are no other takers. but now tt odom/his agent have taken that forgranted… its time to be alittle more cut-throat.

    i like beasley. i don’t agree w/the stuff said abt his and the lakers’ window.. if anything he keeps the lakers window open longer. its about continuity, succession planning. when kobe retires in 2-3 years we’d have pau bynum beasley. thats a pretty solid core around which we can build around. why would miami agree to that? because their window is much shorter – it closes in 2010 if they can’t buildup their roster. im hearing they could go for both odom + boozer, giving them a huge front-court (even bigger if j.oneal comes back from the dead). beasley was undersized and was never gonna be a brusing and dominant 4 anyway.. but he could play the 3 well if he developed his outside shot. the only problem is his defense.

    regarding some of the other S&T ideas.. the lakers don’t want expiring contracts.. they need players and contributors.. why on earth would we carry them for a year when we’re over the cap? we have more financial flexibility by letting odom walk. and i’d stay away from david lee. its no knock on him.. but the d’antoni system seriously over-inflates a player’s value.. look at nash/stat/marion. no way they’re gonna match that level of production in any other system.

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  83. Lo & the FO should lock themselves in a room and get a deal done. Going to Miami & Dallas will not get a deal done with the Lakers as the same time and effort should be used here. Dr. Buss has not screwed over anyone in 30 years & LO can be with the franchise for the rest of his life if he chooses.

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  84. 79. That’s probably the likely package. Not bad either. That package does give the Lakers more options with the glut of point guards along with Morrison’s contract.

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  85. 82: yeah, it does. With farmar + morrison + haslem, we’d be a major player at the deadline w/ those expiring deals. If we like haslem, we still have 6 mil in expiring with the first two.

    Though, again, I’d like to keep him as long as the price isn’t too high

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  86. Expiring contracts will be very valuable next season, especially when combined with Morrison’s. Unless you can get someone really good in a trade for Lamar, which I doubt.

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  87. Candy will keep Lamar playing at the same level until 50. There will be no drop off.

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  88. From Yahoo:

    http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/news?slug=aw-odomboozer071509&prov=yhoo&type=lgns

    Heat working to try to land Boozer in trade and sign Odom for 5yr/mid-level money. It talks about LA offering 4/36 and LO wanting 5/45. I really don’t see why he would take a 5yr deal from Miami for a total less than LA’s 4 yr offer, but hey. That said, I’d do the 5/45 if we could close this…make the last year a PO or TO or partial guarantee if you really don’t want to offer it. I think a partial guarantee, say for 4 mill, is a compromise (4yr/36 guaranteed with the option for one more at 9 or buyout for 4). What do you guys think?

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  89. da1andonlybus July 15, 2009 at 9:07 pm

    I think we need Odom but look at Dr. Buss’s situation. Not only is he going to pay Odom 9 million or 10 million per year…but this year he will have to pay $1 for every dollar they are over the luxury tax. We are fans and like to do a lot of talking but as the owner, would you pay 20 million or 18 million for at least the first year for Odom. And remember he was a key part of our finals run but he did have his share of games where he did not show up.

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  90. I think I’ve lost a lot of respect for Odom.

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  91. Hi guys.
    I would just like to barge in with the discussion and give my two cents.

    Supposed, LO will not be joining your team. I think you still have a Veteran’s Minimum contract still.

    What are you thoughts about getting Juwan Howard (charlotte -$586,457)), Joe Smith (cavaliers -$1,200,000), or Kurt Thomas (Bucks)?

    In this way, you get pretty good post players in the form of Howard and Thomas who can shoot from beyond the FT line. Not only that, they can fit right into your system and provides another D-mentality as well. Plus, these are players who bring the intangibles, they still have the hustle in them, you know.

    How about Lamar for Denver’s Linas Kleiza and Aaron Afflalo or how about getting Ronny Turiaf back? 😀

    sorry for the trade scenarios i’m just drunk.

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  92. No way would I go 5/45

    I think you get less per year if you go longer.

    if we offer 3/27 then if you want 4 or 5 you get less per year. if not then you are not negotiating, you are caving in.

    1) 3/27
    2) 4/35
    3) 5/42

    And no po’s in last year. Maybe early termination PO after year 3.

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  93. With all the bouncing off the walls, we should all remember that, while Jerry Buss can get his ego injured by players/agents antics, he rarely makes poor business decisions because he is angry. He didn’t with Shaq and he won’t with Lamar. If we lose Lamar it will be because the Buss family doesn’t think he is worth what he is requesting and he does.

    The rest of all this uproar is just getting our knickers in a snit.

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  94. I don’t want to sound like a fanboy here, but was Wade ever part of the discussion when Shaq was being traded to Miami?

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  95. Lakers are not smart if they just let Odom walk. They HAVE to at least do a sign and trade. It is irrelevant that there is no one comparable to Odom that they can get. They can still get some players that can help them. I really hope they can re-sign Lamar, but if they just let him walk I beleive that is utterly foolish.

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  96. There is an additional 1% tax on California millionaires from Prop 63 a few yrs ago,so Odom is really being taxed at @ 10.3%.
    While the assorted tax rate of visiting cities is fairly even Cal vs Tex or Fla,the basics are a player in Fla will pay zero state income tax on at least 45 of his games and a Texas player will pay zero state income taxes on at least 47 of his games while a California player is paying 10.3% on all his salary(minus whatever deductions his accountant can manage.Even if the taxes he pays in another state are deducted,he still pays them,just a differ body gets the check.)
    An extra $4,5,6 hundred thou a yr can keep a lot of relatives happy.
    When you start adding in the extremely steep taxes the current Administration and Congress are proposing for the “wealthy” that extra $500thou a player gets to keep is effectively a 10% increase in take-home pay.
    There is a reason most Pro golfers live in Fla or Texas.

    However,I’d be very suprised if Odom hadn’t incorporated himself and the tax rates for Corporations in Cal and Fla are substantially closer.

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  97. the truth,

    That’s so optimistic my head is swimming in it. In other words, it will never happen.

    Karl,

    Kupchak wanted him but Riley was adamant on keeping him. Given that we were never going to get fair market value for Shaq, that was pretty self-explanatory.

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  98. Well everyone…the end of a good run by THIS Laker team. Goodbye LO…it’s been real…. 🙁

    http://tinyurl.com/6alhec

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  99. this is off-topic

    There have been 5 players in NBA history to average at least 15 PPG 5 RBD 2 STL for their entire career:

    Michael Jordan
    Scottie Pippen
    Jon Barry
    Clyde Drexler
    Ron Artest

    Crazy but true. Great group to be in Artest!

    PS: people forget how great Pippen was. I just watched a replay of a mid-90’s bulls game and was reminded that this guy gets short shrift always. Scottie was one of the all-time greats.!

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  100. Turns out all Lamar’s moaning about staying here for less, I love the beach,etc., was just more pampered athlete doublespeak. He just finished a contract that paid him over 60 million dollars over the course of the contract! How much do you need? I have lost a lot of respect for LO in the process. The economy is bad, lots of empty suites at NBA games, Lamar, time to check yourself and get real. 3 year at 9 million is more than generous for a 30 year old player. That said, if Lakers could sign and trade for David Lee that would be tremendous. Doesn’t hit threes, but hustles, runs the floor, and boards like a madman. Doesn’t take nights off. I’ve always liked Chris WIlcox’s game, if he can be had on the cheap

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  101. Upon further revew, post #77 by TB says it all. Do you want to be remembered as a Laker, or as a guy who bounced around and had a good year or two with the Lakers? Well done, TB.

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  102. Just as a quick note, I love David Lee (the player) as much as the next guy, but do people here really think they can actually have him in a sign-and-trade? Walsh isn’t going to cut into his 2010 space by trading for the kind of contract Odom wants, and for the same amount of money, he could simply resign Lee. Unless we took on Jeffries’ contract (or God forbid, Curry’s contract), I don’t see any benefit for Walsh in doing this, unless someone wants to calculate the salary cap numbers as to whether New York will still have significant room in 2010 if they get rid of Jeffries’ contract and give Odom $9-10 million a year.

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  103. DXManners,

    Kudos. Wilcox is a guy I’ve always thought had a ton of talent and needed someone to point him in the right direction. He’s on the shortlist of guys I’d want the Lakers to go after if we hit the disaster point and Lamar walks, although I think Joe Smith would be a better fit.

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  104. Agreed with BCR, if Knicks are paying anyone, it’s David Lee.

    Our ONLY S and T option is Haslem + Chalmbers + (hopefully) a #1. Even with that, I don’t think Miami would want to pay Odom more than we are paying him (and they are currently using Haslem as bait for Boozer).

    I give it a few days before Odom comes to his senses.

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  105. kobama,

    Well, Cuban has serious interest and would offer some combination of Howard, assorted floatsam, and picks, but Kupchak would have to be desperate to accept that. Just noting that we have options outside of Miami; Miami is simply the most palatable. Another possibility would be Odom to Chicago for Hinrich and Noah or Thomas, but I’m fairly certain Chicago has expressed no interest in Odom so far.

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  106. 93. Birdman

    I forgot about Ronni. We would love to have ronni back. He can definitely fill in and play a good 20 to 30 minutes. Most laker fans probably don’t remember how good ronni was because he didn’t have a great postseason because he was playing through an injury and playing out of position at the center. But ronni would definitely be welcomed back. The warriors and throw in anybody else and i’ll be happy with that.

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  107. Joel,

    I’m not sure who exactly Golden State would offer with Ronny that Kupchak would bite on unless they’re giving us Curry or Randolph, and both are downright untouchable.

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  108. odom+farmar+1 st round pick for josh smith and jeff teague

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  109. BCR,

    Yeah I looked on the warriors roster, they really don’t have anyone to give back if that sign and trade were ever discussed. But if that were ever possible I would be glad to see Turiaf back though.

    There are some decent bigs that the lakers could get if lamar doesn’t return. Like Drew Good for cheap, or Big Baby Davis (Boston would probably match the offer though).

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  110. New York will not participate in any Lakers sign-and-trade deals. It’s fairly obvious their main priority right now is to shed salaries. The Knicks can practically sign two superstars in next year’s free agency, why would they want Odom?

    Someone else stated that Lamar is a unique player, more valuable than two other players being paid $10 million – Bargani and Turkoglu. I will agree with you that Lamar is a very unique player, but that’s as far as I will go with you on that. Like Ariza, Lamar works well within our system. Yes, he is talented; but can he produce the same without a player named Pau Gasol on the other side of the block demanding attention and skillfully pass the ball to him as he’s cutting through the key? I doubt it. If Lamar leaves, I wouldn’t be surprised if he contributes mediocre production like he did with the Clippers and in Miami, or Ariza like he did with the Knicks and Magic.

    The lack of loyalty in NBA profoundly infuriates me. Would Ariza be as valuable in monetary values had he not played with the Lakers? Would Odom even be lucky enough to be paid $5 million a year after his just-expired horrendous contract had he not played with the Lakers? Those two players thrive (only) within our system; the fans love them; THEY JUST WON A CHAMPIONSHIP. But no, it still all comes down to money. In today’s economy, the money they were offered is actually worth more than last year.

    I lost a lot of respect for Odom. Lamar was actually my favorite player in the entire NBA, not just on the Lakers. I realize now that every soothing comment Lamar said prior to free agency was nothing more than lies to placate fans. Why would he want to deal with a firestorm of disappointed and angry fans before he had to, before he could remain out of public eye and let his agent do the dirty work?

    If retaining Odom is impossible, I believe Wilcox will be a better fit than Joe Smith. Joe Smith is too old to match with the second unit’s speed. Wilcox isn’t exactly athletic per se, but he would be able to keep up better than Smith. I like Drew Gooden a lot, but I’m not too sure that will happen.

    Bottom line is this: If LO leaves, it will not be the end of the world. However, I personally believe that Lamar is pivotal to the Lakers’ championship contention. He’s what glues the team, seamlessly operates between the starting lineup and the bench, and as we all know, the heart of the team. I do not believe Lamar will go to another team, but these games his camp and the Lakers’ front office are playing are risky and unnecessary. Buss needs to swallow his pride, put the deal back on the table, and demand a yes or no answer from Odom. $30 million for three seasons or $36 million for four years; why would Lamar decline either after it’s clear that the Lakers mean business.

    I apologize if this post seems like a rant or is incoherent. It’s late and I’ve since lost track of what I was typing. Cheers.

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  111. why would mitch pay ronnie what he’s getting now when he wouldn’t pay it last year? the lakers FO has done a good job of finding solid roleplayers cheap..

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  112. 107

    to adrian

    I wish that trade would happen

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  113. or my personal favourite odom+farmar for scola and battier

    i would be very surprised if one of this trades will happen though

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  114. followed by bynum for yao. maybe TMac for kobe right?

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  115. Over the past two years, I’ve been snooping at other NBA blogs for comments and reactions to Lamar Odom. What do they think of him? Who wants to trade for Lamar? What would they give up to get him?

    At home, it has run hot and cold–now the “hottest” it has ever been. The Laker fans sometimes think he is a unique and terrific glue guy–except when they want to trade his butt out of town for ????

    Anywhere else, only token respect: “maybe he’s good for the Lakers and the triangle, but not for us–too expensive, too flaky, too inconsistent, too old.”

    To be clear, not only is there not a huge line of bloggers at other sites clammering for the services of Lamar O: nobody wants him as a core player.

    Well, the one possible exception is in Miami, where there is a real soft spot remaining. Duane Wade was once his teammate.

    If the Heat were to trade “Haslem +” for Boozer, and “Beasley +” for Lamar, Duane Wade would suddenly have Boozer, O’Neal, and Lamar frontcourt on a team that could actually be a threat in the East this year. It would keep Wade in Miami. It could be a Riley style shot.

    If a longish deal can’t be put together for Lamar at Miami, there may be no plan B. Lamar might not be able to even get a MLE for a few years from a contending team.

    This is really high stakes poker.

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  116. Scola, you mean the same Scola that Derek Fisher decked in the playoffs? I’m sure that team would have great team chemistry.

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  117. the #77 post is right on the money. Lamar and his agent have shown to be greedy and not the team player he has been reported to be.Selfish and foolish,learn from coops example.
    Also kobes got 5 years left in his tank,he should be passing jordan for career pts and titles about that time,an cementing himself as the best 2 guard in history…pc

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  118. @zephid, #118. I think those kinds of things are a bit overrated. Unless there’s complete personal bad blood between players, it doesn’t matter that they tangled in the playoffs. In fact, probably more respect for hard battle.

    I love Scola’s game. Tough gritty guy who’s been underrated. Good touch on the offensive end and a great rebounder. If Lakers actually had to give up LO, there are a lot worse replacements than Scola.

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  119. So, for all the people who have “lost a lot of respect” for Lamar, will you suddenly regain it if he re-signs? Or will you hold a grudge for the rest of his career? I find it tough to fault Lamar for seeking to maximize his utility when everyone in America does it every single day of the week. It’s the same as turning down a job offer in favor of another. You don’t need a good reason for it; it’s your employment, you can choose it as you please. That’s the right of the worker under capitalism; the right to refuse working for a particular employer.

    And how much Lamar Odom is worth to the Lakers means a lot more than how much Lamar Odom is worth to other teams. Even if he’s worthless to other teams, the fact that he’s highly valued by the Lakers will place his value above market expectations, assuming he plays his strategy correctly, which he has.

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  120. First of all, I’d love Odom back with the Lakers over almost anybody who falls in the category of very good rotation players but not quite stars themselves. His contribution stats-wise has been discussed, I also want to stress though that he is as big a contributor as Kobe to the on-court and off-court emotional make-up of this team – call it team chemistry if you will. This should factor into the equation in my opinion. But not at a price that screws the Lakers long-term.

    So without being an expert on sign-and-trades (could a previously traded guy like Battie be included?), here are a few scenarios that I hope could make some sense. I’m leaving out the immediate contenders in both conferences because they’d be very unlikely partners, and also trying to stay away from interesting players with toxic contracts just like LO’s agent would like to negotiate:

    Nets: for Boone/Battie; Battie off the books after upcoming season

    76ers: for Thaddeus Young and Kapono; no chance to shed a bad contract with them, but Young could replace some of what Odom did and Kapono would be what Sasha should be

    Bulls: Odom/Farmar for Hinrich/Tyrus Thomas has been mentioned a lot; I don’t think they’d take on Vujacic or Walton the way they usually handle their roster

    Pistons: Prince would be a target, but apparently he’s close to untouchable

    Hawks: for Marvin Williams and spare parts/picks; Josh Smith would also be too high priced as a 4th option in my opinion

    Bobcats: Odom for Diaw as the starting point; Diaw has three years at 9 million remaining; they have Raja Bell on his last year, maybe they want Ammo back 😉

    Heat: this has been discussed the most, Beasley and Chalmers are the most interesting players, Haslem the most likely; James Jones or especially Jamario Moon could be interesting players on our roster; Moon being able to do some Odom stuff and some Ariza stuff (though probably on a lower level)?

    Magic: just kidding…

    Wizards: a package centered around Mike Miller and Blatche or McGee? Maybe even Crittendon if Farmar is included.
    _______

    Rockets: for Ariza and one of their solid bigs (Scola/Landry/Hayes) – how cruel would that be? (of course, not meant seriously)

    Blazers: should they turn to Odom if/when Millsap is matched, I don’t see a sign-and-trade possibility with them since all their key players are paid less than $7mil per year. They do have Darius Miles’ expiring $9mil on their books though. So if this is allowed by the rules, the Lakers could find a third team looking to shed payroll, send LO to Portland, get a player they want from the third team which in return gets Miles’s expiring contract.

    Thunder: Odom plus either Ammo or Sasha (probably Ammo) for Collison, Watson and Sefolosha; Watson’s $6mil expire after this season, Collison might be a keeper and costs $13mil for the remaining two years on his contract, and Sefolosha is rather cheap and could be an amazing fit as a big guard in the triangle. I really like this scenarion, plus the Lakers could still get a piece for Watson at the deadline. As we all know, the big hang-up – no beaches is OKC!

    Warriors: for Ronny and Speedy Claxton’s expiring contract; Turiaf’s role would be bigger now then back when the front office didn’t re-sign him. Again, Claxton’s contract, maybe even coupled with a second one, could fetch another piece closer to the deadline; regarding smaller Warriors’ contracts, I like Azubuike and Anthony Morrow, the latter being a very good shooter

    Clippers: with Randolph gone they will most likely keep him, but Camby could be a nice on-year rental at $7.6mil, maybe coupled with Mardy Collins’s expiring contract. Would be interesting to see whether living close to the beach would convince Lamar to sign on for a second stint with the Clippers?

    Kings: they have talented young bigs in Hawes and Thompson plus the expiring contracts of Kenny Thomas and Abdur-Rahim (if Hoopshype is correct) to amke a sign-and-trade work. But they are probably so deep into rebuilding that they’d rather develop their young guys than jump a stage by exchanging one for a better but more pricey veteran.

    Overall I’d say that there are a few solid options, not really knowing what the possible trading partners a thinking though. So I’d still lean to having Lamar back, preferrably for three years, over all other possibilities which always mean integrating players into a new and quite complicated offense very quickly. Not everybody is as smart as Pau, unfortunately.

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  121. Sorry, forgot the source for my overly long (and currently awaiting moderation) comment #122:

    http://hoopshype.com/salaries.htm

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  122. zephid fish n scola was a 1 time thing. artest and kobe have made careers out of getting under each other’s skin.. heck i bet kobe gave artest the ol’uppercut when he barged into the shower to peep at his black mamba.

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  123. While LO is clearly the best option out there, I’m not so sure that Beasley isn’t a good back up option.

    The kid has a really dynamic and diverse game. He’s a great fit in the triangle (he can shoot, drive, and post up), and coming off the bench he could be free to flex his abilities ala Kobe in his 2nd year. Plus, I’m pretty confident Phil is capable of keeping him under control in a pressure situation. If Kareem Rush can knock down pressure 3’s in the WCF in his rookie season, Michael Beasley can be an effective 6th man.

    Thinking into the future, this is clearly a top option for the Lakers. Beasley is a top young talent in the league, and the only situation where you even think twice about pickin him up for a $9M/year bench player is if you just won a title with that $9M/year bench player.

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  124. The Dude Abides July 16, 2009 at 7:33 am

    I would imagine that the Lakers would only do a sign and trade with one team (Miami), and only if Beasley is the main guy headed to LA. I can see Riley taking on this trade only if the Heat get Boozer for Haslem and filler. All in all, I think we’ll end up re-signing LO by adding to the 3 yr/$27m deal with a fourth year at about $7 million.

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  125. The Dude Abides July 16, 2009 at 7:34 am

    101. Kaveh, you might want to revise the third name in your list. I did get a good laugh about it, though 😉

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  126. and keep in mind, one of the ceaveats of a sign/trade are that the player being traded has some say in where he goes, b/c the trade doesn’t work if he doesn’t sign the contract.

    so assuming LO wants to play near a beach, you can rule out OKC, Sacramento, D.C, and assuming LO wants to win, you can rule out any non-contender or any team that he doesn’t make a contender.

    I think Kurt’s right. Its either a renegotiation with Lakers, a sign/trade to Miami, or he takes a midlevel with another team which is a lose/lose for both parties.

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  127. 101. Kaveh meant Rick Barry

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  128. The fact that Lamar is thinking about going to the Heat for reportedly less money overall despite the longer contract leads me to believe that what he wants most is to be a bigger fish in a smaller pond. Meaning I don’t think he wants to fill the same role he did last year – he wants to start. If that’s the case, do we still want him back? When we discuss all of the value he adds to the team, we assumed that he would be our glue guy both on and off the court – doing all the little things offensively and especially defensively to help us repeat. I’m not sure doing those things is a priority for him anymore.

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  129. wiseolgoat,
    I think there is probably less pressure playing in Miami then in L.A., even though his role would be bigger there. I don’t think Lamar deals with that type of pressure (high expectations) well. That could be a factor, too.

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  130. Wiseolgoat – You can also add that many former players such as Caron Butler boast about how great Miami is. Odom may just be ready to ride out his career in a place where it was the happiest of times for him. Just speculating but that could be it.

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  131. I am not sure what some people are thinking but even 9 Mil or 10 Mil is less than what LO made this past year. He was at 14 Mil for the 08-09 season. I don’t know about you but 4 Million or 5 Million(if the 9 mill offer comes back) is a LOT of money to me.

    Tim Thomas? Please Lord do NOT let that happen!!
    Beasly? No thanks.
    David Lee is great but no where near what LO can do for the Lakers.

    We need LO.

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  132. 132

    What’s your point? He’s 29 years old in a depressed economy. Of course he’s going to have to take a pay cut from a contract he signed 6 years ago (and didn’t really live up to).

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  133. It has been repeated mentioned that Lamar made $11.4M last year, not $14M. The extra bump on the salary cap was due to a trade kicker paid in his first year and spread per CBA. Let’s stop this continual $14M salary discussion with Lamar.

    Also, all this sign-n-trade talk seems a bit of nonsense to me. It is worth more to the Lakers to let him walk and sign a min vet, than to sign him to $10M and then have to take back $9M-$11M in any trade scenario. Buss is trying to save money at the moment because he is way over the luxury tax level and that level is coming down drastically next year. Unless we get a big trade exemption, a s-n-t wouldn’t be very palatable for this organization.

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  134. I think a lot of people are now getting upset with Odom because of their own expectations of what “less” meant when Odom said he would take “less”. Many thought he meant much less because that idea fit in with what we understand of the Lakers’ payroll situation. So many were hoping/thinking that he would accept an offer slightly higher than the MLE or that he’d play for 7-8 million (with 8 mill being the very top end). But anything less than 11.5 million is *technically* less money than Odom made last year. That may not be what we wanted, and that may also be a bit slippery of LO, but in actuality, he hasn’t lied, yet. I’m not trying to defend Odom here, I’ve done plenty of that over the years. I’m just trying to give a different perspective on why people seem to be getting upset with him.

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  135. Also, sorry, for, all the, commas. Jeez, I don’t know what my problem is today.

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  136. Anyone think the Lakers put a no-candy incentive in Lamar’s contract and that’s why he’s balking?

    Man, I can’t get enough of crazy contract incentives. I think the next CBA needs to have far fewer guaranteed contracts and way more incentive-based deals.

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  137. Zephid,
    Whether or not you meant to be funny, I think the next CBA will have a defined area for incentives. It is one way to pay for performance that results in more $ to the club – if done with more logic than the examples so far presented.

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  138. Zephid, losing respect for Lamar doesn’t mean I can’t cheer for him if he signs with the Lakers (what about Kobe 2 years ago?), it just means he is like every other greedy, overpaid athlete in our nuthouse society.

    Did winning a title really go to the heads of Trevor and Lamar that much?

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  139. It seems like everyone is forgetting about the toughness factor Odom brings to the Lakers..

    IMO, Odom is the toughest guy on the team.

    That is a big deal for a championship team!

    ..to see Odom go, it sounds like a disaster to me.

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  140. Whether or not the Lakers resign Odom, next year’s team will be reconfigured to a new emerging NBA reality–a reality partially inspired by the Laker championship.

    To maintain flexibility, it might be best for the Lakers to simply allow Lamar to sign and walk. This keeps their luxury tax penalty down. Any sign and trade reignites the luxury tax hell and precludes wiser moves downstrean–when the smoke has cleared.

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  141. The “new emerging NBA reality” is that there are two tiers of teams, those that worry about the salary cap to the point of dumping talent, and those teams that load up talent and win. The Gasol trade is a case in point. Look at Orlando, Cleveland and the Spurs this summer.

    Kobe is turning 31, the window is now.

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  142. inwit’s right (9:53). Kobe is in his prime, Artest is as well, and Pau is entering it (if he hasn’t already). The next 3-5 years is the window…we should maximize that. Lock all the core players up for the next 4-5 years and try to win as much as possible. I know you need to plan for the future too, but you don’t do it at the expense of the present. Put it this way…would you rather put yourself in the best position to maximize the changes we win 2-3 more championships in the next 5 years or “fear” the tax implications (which would probably only be this high at the worst this year and next) and not have the depth to withstand a full 82 game season and playoff run leading, potentially, to unfulfilled expectations after this last championship? Cleveland, Orlando, Boston, and SA are all going “all-in” at this point, why wouldn’t we?

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  143. **maximize the chances, not changes (6th line of prev post)**

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  144. 141, drrayeye, I don’t think there will be too many wiser moves downstream. Maybe you simply have a different opinion of Lamar Odom than I do, but if this were two years ago, I don’t there’s any way that Odom doesn’t get a max contract extension. In this down economic time, prices for players are at huge lows (at least since the 1999 CBA was enacted). If anything, we should be stocking up on assets now as much as we can, so that when prices rise later as the world economy recovers, we will have locked up a number of low-cost (comparatively), high-efficiency assets for a long term period of time.

    Think of it as investing in a 20-yr bond in the 80’s when interest rates were in the 18%-19% range. It was utterly idiotic back then, now it seems like it would have been a great investment to have.

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  145. Coffee is for Closers July 16, 2009 at 10:05 am

    goonie, you got me. lol.

    and whomever said there’s an additional 1 % millionaires tax in CA is wrong.

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  146. Any player in the NBA will always get less money whether they like it or not when they sign their 3rd contract unless you’re a superstar. There was no way Lamar was going to get more money than his second contract. So, by him saying he was going to sign for less is a moot point. He wasn’t going to get paid more anyways. Stop making excuses for him!

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  147. Lakers Might Be Lamar Odom’s Only Bidder

    Source: Eric Pincus of HOOPSWORLD

    Assuming the Los Angeles Lakers cut guard Sun Yue before August 1st, they are committed to 12 players for the 2009/10 season at a total payroll of $83.8 million.

    Add in some $13.9 million in luxury taxes and the Lakers are on the hook for $97.8 million.

    Making an offer to free agent forward Lamar Odom took significant deliberation between General Manger Mitch Kupchak and the Buss family.

    Faced with the prospect of record overhead and a much tighter profit margin, owner Dr. Jerry Buss was quoted by Kupchak as saying, “But we’re so damn competitive.”

    In giving Odom a chance to make at least $27 million over three years, the Lakers felt they were doing the right by Lamar while making the sound basketball decision despite the exorbitant cost.

    Unless the Utah Jazz match Paul Millsap’s offer sheet and the Portland Trail Blazers turn their attention to Lamar, the Lakers may be the only team with bidding power.

    A $34 million Mid-Level Exception deal over five years from a team like the Miami HEAT, still isn’t close to what the Lakers have offered (even with the state tax advantage in Florida – although that perk would be on just half Lamar’s salary, road games are taxed locally)

    Odom’s reluctance to take what the team considers a generous offer has led to a stalemate. For now the Lakers have taken it off the table and are considering other options.

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  148. Darius,

    You should become Odom’s agent. If his agent could plead his case as well as you, then maybe he would already have gotten a 5yr-50m contract from the Lakers 🙂

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  149. Lamar was overpaid in his previous contract. If anything, he owes the lakers money.

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  150. if the reports are true and he wants what Marion got at 5 years/38.6 million is there any way that they could front load that at 10 million a year for the first 3 years thus making his final two a very easy to deal with 4.3 million a year? or is there some sort of contractual accept that prevents that?

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  151. @ 144. Great point. Clev, Bos, SA, and Orl are going all in, so are the Mavs, and I’m willing to bet the Bulls would if there was talent left on the market. Even Detroit is spending a lot of dough.

    Here’s what I don’t get: with the exception of a few really small market teams (NO, Memphis), It seems like the ONLY organizations in the world who are unaware of the global economic crisis are NBA franchises.

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  152. Darius (135),

    Just look where what Lamar apparently really “meant” has gotten him.

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  153. #152

    Exactly!

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  154. I don’t get this “I’m losing respect for LO b/c he wants more money”. Do you also lose respect for Buss b/c he wants to maximize his profits? At least LO showed up for the finals while Buss was playing poker. You think if the Mavs were in the finals, M Cuban would be playing poker? He’d be behind the bench screaming his head off.

    Look, noone wants to win more or works harder than Kobe, and what does Kobe tell LO? Do what you have to do to take care of yourself and your family. I think LO and TA is/was being short-sighted and negotiated themselves out of a very good situation. That doesn’t make them selfish or greedy. Foolish, maybe, or just human.

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  155. Couple points:

    One of the reasons we won the championship and Kobe did not win the MVP is that his minutes were held lower this year to keep him fresher in the playoffs. His stats per minute were as good as last year. We should expect this trend to continue.

    If you check out Lamar’s website, you see a big bold quote from Pat Riley. That should tell you something. Pat thought Lamar would be the next coming of Magic. That could be how they would attempt to use him – with Wade as the SG and a showtime type of offense.

    I agree with the comment that Lamar might shy from being the man, but I rather think he thinks of himself as THE MAN and would be more of one in Miami.

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  156. 146 Zephid,

    I don’t have a clue how Lamar will work out next year with the Lakers if he stays, and, respectfully, neither do you. With each additional year, it will become more unclear. The NBA never stays the same, nor will the Lakers, nor does Lamar. It’s all about risk/reward. Every business has to have a plan B. In these times, it might not be too bad to have a plan C.

    If the Lakers don’t immediately replace Lamar, and things don’t go well, there will be opportunities to trade two expiring contracts for a player at about the MLE–without further increasing the luxury tax penalty. There is likely to be many candidates available–perhaps even Trevor Ariza!

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  157. Chise – couldn’t agree with you more. Sign LO to the 5 year deal with the 5th being a team option or something of that sort. This team can contend (barring injuries) seriously for the next few years. Buss isn’t getting younger, so why not go all out for a team that may possibly win another 2-3 rings? Get LO signed and get the focus of the team on what matters most – successfully repeating again as champs.

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  158. Zephid,
    It really isn’t about how good Lamar is; it is about how the Lakers will function over the next 4-5 yrs. Yes, the Lakers will look beyond next year – they have to – they are a business.

    What Lamar’s request does is totally handcuff the club with regards to its young players. Plus, it makes it probably they will have to make a choice between Pau and Kobe in a couple of years. Is Lamar worth all that? Some of us don’t think so. As a result, we think the risk of letting him walk, if he won’t take what is offered – which is better than what other clubs have offered, is a risk worth taking.

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  159. I thought Lamar’s year in Miami was when he really became a power forward full-time.

    I’ve been hearing about him playing PG his whole career, and it never really happened. I’ll be shocked if it happens now in his 30s.

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  160. We can all agree that Odom is justified in trying to get the most money from his contract. That’s our inalienable right in a free society. the way that he does that questionable, however, given that he is obviously aggravating the only person in the world – Dr. Buss – who can give him the most money in the coming contract. That raises some questions about how Odom’s agent – who is presumably Odom’s chief adviser – performs his fiduciary duties to his client.

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  161. Money isn’t everything, just ask Trevor Ariza next year. Oh, I forgot, it wasn’t about money, it was about “respect.” The Lakers didn’t respect him enough by not offering enough money.

    People reveal themselves by their actions, if, for Lamar, it is about every dime he can make, we are entitled to adjust our opinions of him accordingly.

    No one says he is not playing within the rules of our culture, maybe that is what is so disappointing. Maybe Lamar should look for a job on Wall St.

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  162. 162.

    Desire that is “right” in the body of a young man is perverted when in the body of an old man? Okay.

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  163. The Lakers will not do a sign and trade for Lamar. They are way over the luxury tax level and signing and trading means taking on more salary. If the Lakers let LO walk, they avoid adding salary which is a minus for the fans, but financially a big plus for the orgainization.
    The only reason the Lakers have tried to sign LO is that they won a championship with him as a main contributor and they want to keep the key elements on the team as close as last year’s. Adding someone else other than LO makes no sense because it introduces uncertainty at a very high cost due to luxury tax implications. They know what they get with Lamar in the triangle offense.

    So, Bucher is 100% right , the Lakers won’t do a sign and trade. They will either sign him or let him walk. When they prematurely signed Bynum to a huge (bad) contract last year, they had resigned themselves to the notion that they will probably have to let Lamar go. But because they won a championshio with LO as a key contributor, things changed.

    According to this hoopsword article:
    “Making an offer to free agent forward Lamar Odom took significant deliberation between General Manger Mitch Kupchak and the Buss family.”

    http://www.hoopsworld.com/Story.asp?story_id=13332

    That means, from a financial point of view, the Buss family did not really want to do this but they decided to make a good effort for public relations issues as it would not look good to let two key players from a title run to walk purely due to financial issues.

    But now that the public knows that they made very respectable offers to Lamar and he turned them down, LO looks bad not the Lakers ( as Ariza’s case). I can’t see too many people sympathizing with a very talented but inconsistent player who is the fourth best player on the team but is not satisfied with 9 million for 3 years in this kind of economy when Artest signed for MLE. All you need is read the Lakers blogs including this one and you will see that by far most people feel the Lakers have been generous and fair with LO.
    LO is losing points in the public not the lakers.

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  164. This isn’t about likes and dislikes. It is about getting all you can vs maximizing the team flexibility over a number of years.

    Taking one side or the other misses the point completely.

    When this is over – if Lamar remains a Laker – there will be no, repeat no, hard feelings between the boss and his employee.

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  165. This keeps coming up, and it’s a little off topic, but I don’t think the Bynum contract is a bad one. This is a young guy who could be a potential franchise center, who came back before he was ready to be there for his team in the playoffs. Remember, last year he was making the end of his rookie deal — his big money starts next year and could go for three years. We don’t know how that will turn out, if he gets near his potential this could be a steal, or maybe he will be injury prone and never quite bounce back. The Lakers made it a three-year deal with some outs in case. But to call this deal bad now is premature at best. Potential franchise centers do not grow on trees, you pay them on potential.

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  166. Kurt’s correct – the Lakers had to keep Bynum, lest he walk and terrorize them for the next several years. When he’s healthy, he’s a beast. And Bynum wasn’t healthy when he came back from his injury last season, as evidenced by his lack of spring.

    I’m in the camp that wants Odom back, but not if it means breaking the bank. I think the Lakers offers have been more than fair, and if feels otherwise, well then go have fun losing in the first round in Miami. We’ve seen the Wade-Odom pairing before, and it couldn’t been the remnants of the old Pacers contenders.

    The Odom contract offer was pulled by the Buss family, and it makes me wonder if perhaps some in the front office see the matter as a referendum on Bynum in some way.

    Jim Buss drafted Bynum, and he no doubt played a part in the decision to extend his deal. LO has been a clutch player and nice insurance for Bynum when hurt or not playing well, but maybe the Buss family really wants to take off the training wheels and see what Andrew can do as a second or third option, a guy who has to find a way to be effective and play for 30-35 minutes per night.

    If he’s always got Lamar to fall back — or more importantly, the coaches can go to Lamar at the first sign of trouble for Bynum — maybe the Busses are thinking they’ll never find out if they’re getting their money’s worth from Bynum.

    It’s risky, for sure, but it makes sense. If I were in charge, I’d stay with the known and load up for a run at two or three more titles before Kobe’s done. But I’m not a high stakes poker player, and if Andrew can grow into the solid third option the Lakers need, maybe Lamar’s contributions can be replaced with a less-expensive guy who can spell Pau and Bynum for a few minutes a night.

    $9 million is a lot to pay for a third option, especially if he’s possible slowing the growth of a more-expensive, younger guy you hope to build around.

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  167. I swear I can’t type on this site.

    “couldn’t beat”

    and “if he feels otherwise”

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  168. Kurt’
    You keep defending Bynum’s contract but, what was the advantage of signing Bynum in the middle of last year and not waiting until after the season? He was going to be a Restricted free agent so the Lakers could match any offers. They essentially panicked and gave him maximum salary money for 3 years.
    Think about it. If they had waited until now, they would have probably signed him for a lot less money, have more flexibility and they would not be so tight with offering Lamar a contract.

    It makes no sense to rush and give somebody who is restricted free agent maximum money without getting a good look. The only thing they did right is limiting the Guaranteed money to 3 years. Was that worth it in retrospect? I don’t think so. They should have taken the chance with letting him play the season out and if he had done really well, they would give him a 4-5 year contract.
    Look at what has happened with David Lee. He was a double-double machine last year and still, nobody is offering him a substantial contract to even put some pressure on the Knicks.

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  169. Kurt, I think that’s why more incentive-based contracts would be much smarter for teams, with possibly huge earnings for players. Why not pay Andrew $8 mil guaranteed then have the rest of the $6+ mil be buried in incentives, say All-Star appearances, number of games, player of the week/month, points/rebounding numbers? Instead we’re stuck paying him $14 mil guaranteed per year, the majority of it being on potential.

    Frankly, if I were the owners, I would propose something along the lines of halving the guaranteed contract levels, but increasing the total amount of pay possible via incentives. Why not have Kobe Bryant’s contract be $15 mil guaranteed, $15 mil incentives. Say he gets $5 mil if he wins MVP, $5 mil if the team finishes above 60 wins, and $5 mil if he wins Finals MVP.

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  170. Kurt, I agree with you about Bynum’s contract. Charlie Rosen makes the same point in his latest.

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  171. BTW, I have no hard feelings towards Buss or the front office for playing hardball with Odom. Negotiating is like this in every type of business and especially in professional sports. The team obviously has a dollar value on what Odom provides and I don’t blame them for trying to sign him for that (or even better for payroll, a lesser) amount. The Buss family may be rich, but they still own a business. I mean, if you look at Mark Cuban or Paul Allen, those guys run businesses to – those businesses just aren’t their NBA teams. Their NBA teams are like hobbies (hobbies they love and have a huge interest in being successful at, but hobbies nonetheless). They’ve brought business savvy to their hobbies and made them sucessful businesses as well, but they could lose money on their teams and in their big picture of finances it wouldn’t matter that much. It’s different for the Buss’ and that’s why I don’t ever criticize them when it comes to how they run the Lakers. They continually put a quality product on the court and have provided the teams fans with 15 titles and countless other Finals appearances. Good on them in all that they’ve done.

    As for long time defense of Odom – In the past, I’ve defended LO for his contributions, and I’ll continue to do that. I think there are a lot of fans that think he’s a vital piece. The obvious question is at what price? I thought 8 million would get it done. Obviously I fell into the same line of thinking that I said many others did in my previous comment (#136 at 9:14 am). But, I’m not going to get frustrated with that because I have no control over that stuff. The only stuff that does frustrate me is if fans start to take the approach that we’re somehow better off without him or that he can be even somewhat replaced with some veteran FA off the street. Or implying that we’ll simply move on with no viable replacement to do what he does. I just don’t agree with any of those stances. Talks of S&T’s are interesting because that would allow us to improve our team and focus on other needs that we do have (like a more established future at PG or actually replacing LO), but in the end I really don’t see that as a real solution for all the reasons that have already been stated (limited partners, Odom’s increased leverage in those types of talks, getting what we actually want back instead of spare parts that just eat our cap up). In the end, I want Odom back. Not at any costs, but with a real and sincere effort made (which is what has seemingly happened, so I have no qualms with the FO on this). I still remain hopeful (and probably will until he’s actually signed on with another team).

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  172. Thanks for the hoopsworld link, how can anybody say that the Lakers are not keeping up with the other top teams as far as spending money on players. $97.8 million folks, that has to be one of the top salary commitments in the NBA, is it not? That is with only 12 players, it will go up more, no doubt about it. I do not mind LO wanting to try to get the maximum money he can, over the most years, but I do not think it will come from the Lakers anymore. I think that Buss had the maximum money he was willing to go on the table already and that has been pulled now, fine, he tried his best to keep the team together. I guess LO will be playing for the MLE somewhere this next season, unless Portland lands him.

    I am looking forward to Bynum, being the man next year (20 & 10) and earning every penny of his contract, that he signed.

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  173. 172.

    The bottom line is that nobody would be questioning Bynum’s contract right now if Kobe doesn’t fall into his knee in a freak accident (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E2NUsGSzw0Q).

    I’m not sure why people need to be reminded that Bynum was DOMINATING in the games leading up to his injury, putting up 26.2 ppg and 13.8 rpg in the 5 games before he got hurt (while matching up with quality bigs in Duncan, Okafor, & Jefferson).

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  174. The Dude Abides July 16, 2009 at 1:45 pm

    According to Ramona Shelburne, the Lakers offered Lamar a choice between:
    3 yrs/$30m, or 4 yrs/$36m
    http://twitter.com/ramonashelburne

    This is according to Laker publicist John Black. No wonder Dr. Buss is unhappy, seeing as how Schwartz completely ignored both offers. Either way, I think we’ll know before Monday if Lamar will be back. I think it’s about 80/20 that he’s a Laker next season.

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  175. 176.

    The Lakers have the highest payroll commitment for 2009-10 of any team in the L (Boston is 2nd by $5 mil): http://hoopshype.com/salaries.htm.

    But it’s not like the sports media and fans are going to let facts get in the way of their opinions.

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  176. hollinger thinks that it’s all about leverage and actually is amused by the fact that lamar and the lakers don’t really have much of it. i think they really don’t have to go this far. anyhow, this reminder makes me feel safer that we will have lamar back and he will be making that presscon soon where he says that he always wanted to be a laker but it’s a business this and that.

    though i want us to save for the future if lamar does want out, i also want us to contend now. the disparity between starting 5 and bench for us will be as wide as the pacific if he walks. we would have to give starters extra burn and still lose the leads they worked hard on. sure walton might stay healthy and focused, sasha might have a comeback and jordan may have a contract year. but contention is about now. truthfully, though we have faith, faith is better rewarded than merely served. so if the lakers can hammer a sign and trade with miami or maybe chicago for guys like haslem, chalmers, hinrich and thomas (beasley seems a long shot but then we’d see how high riley is on lo) for only some couple of added millions, then i say do it, call it a good summer and bring it on ready.

    that is if lo wants out. if not, lamar makes should stay and we are more or less set.

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  177. Are we fans completely nuts?

    Now we are ragging on Bynum’s contract.

    Just last year we were having the same conversation about Lamar’s contract.

    Hey, people – we can’t just change our tune with each new breeze. Oh, I forgot, we are fans and we can do any stupid thing we want to do. Well, that also means any good FO will ignore our cries. If they were to listen to us, we would be the Knicks last year.

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  178. Hey, is this our Aaron that made it on Hollinger’s chat? Seemed like something he’d ask, so I was just wondering:

    Aaron (Malibu): Please name one starting PG in the NBA worse than Derek Fisher.
    John Hollinger: I take it you didn’t see Sebastian Telfair or Beno Udrich last year.

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  179. Darius – Buss has done a great job as an owner, no doubt.

    But I hope I’m not being a nit picker by pointing out they haven’t provided 15 titles.

    I believe the count of Buss-provided Finals is “only” nine. (LOL)

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  180. Correction: Buss has provided “only” nine titles.

    At least 13 Final appearances during Buss ownership ….

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  181. Joel is about to interview Jim Buss during the Summer League broadcast, you can find the link here:

    http://www.atdhe.net/

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  182. Snoopy – great Aaron reference! Dude is always riding our guys.

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  183. At summer league and trying to see if rumor of an LO deal is real.

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  184. Unfortunately the stream froze on me before they spoke about Odom, or maybe Buss Jr. even declared it off topic, I don’t know.

    In the parts I heard, Buss evaluated Morrison’s performance, saying he hopes Ammo can be a contributor by regaining the shot he displayed in college. Then Buss praised Shannon Brown, the way he came in and put in the work and also that he took a bit less to stay with the Lakers.

    Buss also re-told the story of how he came to judge Bynum, basically going off one impressive workout and the following interview. Good that he judged correctly.

    All in all, not a very revealing interview, maybe I missed the interesting parts. So the only nugget I can report is that according to Buss Jr., Andrew Bynum is not only a good shot blocker but also a great “shot alternator” (sic).

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  185. R,
    Yeah, my fault. I meant to change that after I read it, but didn’t. So, yeah, only 9 titles. Ha.

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  186. If LO gave 110% night in and night out, and was truly dedicated to basketball. I dont think the FO would even have to think twice about signing him. But because he seems to play when he wants too, it creates doubt in your mind. In three years are we going to see a return in performance compared to pay check. I think the answer is no, at 30 years old LO has reached his potential and will continue to be an inconsistent player. If the LAKERS sign him to a long term deal now, and no other teams have interest in him now. Then he will definitely be a dead fish in three years. Fans shouldnt get upset that the FO is not mortgaging the future for the present. LO should just look in the mirror and ask himself what has he done to garner the respect he is asking for. Clearly other FO’s in the league dont have him on their to do list. It is clear that he has truly earned his bad reputation around the league.

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  187. Whats the deal, spill the beans Kurt.

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  188. Break it, Kurt. Be the first, but be right…. BUT TELL US NOW!

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  189. seem it is about odom and 36m/4yrs

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  190. Not sure there is a deal. The rumor is 4/36 (no option years either way), but everyone here is wondering. Only a couple Lakers brass people here.

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  191. Honestly, I think the rumor is false, but trying to get confirmation either way.

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  192. Tony Gaffney is an uber-athlete. Definitely reminds me of Trevor Ariza without the jumpshot. Good help defense and defending one-on-one but zero offense. He’ll unleash something nasty on a fastbreak though.

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  193. I figured this would happen. Jazz matched.

    http://www.sportingnews.com/blog/mojomike/195214

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  194. dave in hillsboro July 16, 2009 at 5:25 pm

    198, E-ROC That’s not what the blog post says. It says he hopes Utah matches, and that they have until Friday. Just another talking head spouting off speculation, nothing more.

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  195. Dave in Hillsboro – Damn, I didn’t read the entire article. I hate it when I do that. Thanx!

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  196. yes kurt, there’s buzz around that 4 year, without option deal. hope it is true. coz that could be the whole summer done right there.

    of course, dreaming is still allowed.

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  197. John Ireland interviewed Rick B. on his show just now. I know, I know…

    Anyway Rick made a good point about Buss not really wanting to offer Lamar that 3/30 contract – he said there never was a 4/36 offer – but being convinced by others in the organization. When he got absolutely no answer, he went back to his prior thinking and pulled the offer off the table.

    Rick doesn’t think the offer is now available for Lamar and that Lamar is most likely out of luck with the Lakers and the club is moving on – working out other players today.

    This doesn’t really sound far fetched; given the financial implications long term if we sign Lamar, i.e. we lose either Pau or Kobe in a couple of years.

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  198. it’s Ric not Rick. COME ON.

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  199. In this world there does not seem to be much that a person values other than the dollar bill. So, I am not surprised that Odom is trying to squeeze a couple million more from the Lakers. However, if Odom had no intention of taking less money to remain a Laker, he should have kept his mouth shut! When a reporter asked him about his contract negotiations, he could have easily said, I don’t know, we’ll wait and see. Instead he volunteered an opinion.

    The only thing a person has of value is his word. We now know that (If we didn’t know it before) Odom’s word means nothing! Whose to believe that he will come back next season in shape, ready to play and motivated to be the sixth man? He has already proved that what he says out of his mouth is just talk to fill the air with the sound of his own voice.

    I can not even fathom the Lakers minus Odom, but if that’s how we start the 2010 season, so be it.

    If only Adam could return to his college days shooting form, he could give us a quality 10-12 minute stint from off of the bench.

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  200. dave in hillsboro July 16, 2009 at 6:16 pm

    200, EROC, of course, now ESPN is saying the Jazz will match tomorrow:

    http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?id=4334968

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  201. Let us also recall that Ric Bucher was also the one who paraded around every ESPN property saying that there was no way Kobe would remain a Laker, and that he was going to be traded immediately. When it comes to our team the dude is not exactly the Oracle of Delphi.

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  202. chearn/203

    L.O. is taking less money, to the tune of $4 million less per season I believe. He never said he was going to play for free, I think the frustration everyone is having with this situation is that $9 million to come off the bench (which makes him the highest paid 6th man, more than Manu Ginobli) at 30 years old, for a championship caliber squad seems incredibly generous, even if it is for the 3 years.

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  203. 187 – Nah I didn’t mean it in a bad way, I was just curious. I never get my questions answered on those ESPN chats.

    Kurt, if there are any Heat executives in the building, could you try to interest them in a Wade-for-Odom deal? Say Mitch told you that Riley doesn’t have the balls to pull that trade off. And buy them a few drinks. We believe in you!

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  204. Hate to say it, but the Bucher report sounds credible. Buss had no problem saying goodbye to Ariza. Why do we expect LO to be any different? The offer is gone. Why do we expect it to be put back on the table? And let’s stop kidding ourselves about how bad the loss would be. At the end of the day, if the Lakers lose LO, they’ve lost 2 of their best 4 players this offseason.

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  205. One other thing from that interview…

    It was pointed out that most teams that repeat do not stand pat over the offseason. When teams stand pat they often suffer from a level of complacency that causes them to fail in their run for a 2nd title.

    The Lakers will be different next year, with at least Ron Artest being a really hungry player. The bench will also be different in function and expectation. We fans are the ones who seem least able to change with the times.

    Conceivably, the Lakers could be better next year for all this disruption. Another type of team that must adjust to the new realities, rather than sitting back on its laurels.

    Just a thought to put through our hand wringing.

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  206. whats the deal Kurt?

    I heard Beasley is on the plane to LA and d-wade said he has some good news coming up stay tuned

    http://twitter.com/Supercoolbeas

    http://twitter.com/dwadeofficial

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  207. Bynum bad contract?

    Are you kids CRAZY. Firstly, there is a saying in the stocks/futures trading business and that’s hindsight is always 20/20. So one must put themselves in the front office’s position at the TIME they signed the extension for bynum. He had not had his second injury yet –you cannot assume that a 21 year old will get injured again. You must make your decisions on the assumption of health or the assumption of X% injury prone which should be relatively close to other 21 year olds (not too high).

    That said, even in hindsight this deal is a good move by the lakers. That is, I would make the same deal TODAY. Why? I don’t remember ever seeing a center up to age 21 show this much talent. It’s not just his size and length, but his touch on the ball and the moves he has already procured into his bag of tricks. Ask yourself if you ever remember another young 21 year old center with Bynum’s potential and skill? Well regarding potential I remember Shaq/Dwight, but that’s just because they were physically dominant. Skill wise I can’t think of another.

    Also, there is nothing that says this kid will be injury prone for his career. Even normal sized kids take time in order to fill into their adult bodies. Just think of a 14 year old kid who has sprouted to 6’1″ but is skinny as a pole. This kid is injury prone at 14 because he has not filled out his body. He needs to be careful not to over-strain his young fragile body. For taller people the time-line shifts even further. Someone like Bynum, with the type of length and size he has, may not reach physical maturity until 25-26. He may be at 21 the equivalent of me or you at 14-15.

    Once he enters into his physical maturity, his body will toughen up. Not only will he put on muscle, but his bones and joints should get stronger. And more importantly his balance and mastery of the use of his body will come. This will drastically reduce injury rate. Someone like Bynum is injury prone early in his career, toughens up, but then at 33-36 will start to deteriate badly. Shaq is actually a physical specimen –for him to still be able to play at 38 is tantamount to incredible gift he got from god.

    And we are only talking about physical attributes. Mentally he will learn the game and learn that passing out of a double team will make him a much better player. His skills will improve dramatically and since he already has such a high release, i can see Bynum being truly great. This kid has the tools to become an all time great in my book. But that’s all potential. It all depends on injuries and desire.

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  208. 210. Craig,

    I would wager that teams that leak talent also don’t repeat. One can argue that we upgraded at the starting 3 and that Bynum could upgrade the 5. But we would be seeing a precipitous drop in talent level at 6th man position if LO leaves. Sure, the addition of Artest and a consistent, injury free year from a developing Bynum could make up for the loss but I wouldn’t think that losing someone of LO’s talent level is the sort of change one enacts for the sake of warding off complacency.

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  209. My guess on Buss and Co.

    Has anyone here asked themselves what if Buss never wanted to sign LO? It’s called PR. Let’s go through the thought process just for the heck of it.

    Let’s assume that the front office and Buss do not want to re-sign LO because the payroll would increase so far over the salary cap and in effect they wouldbe giving 20-25 million just for luxury tax. How would you go about this?

    Well, you would have to demonize LO and the best way to do that is just what has happened. This board is like 90/10 against LO now even though it’s not THEIR money, lol. LO would have to be portrayed as an ungrateful, lazy, pot-smoking candy eating guy who doesn’t care about the fans and is super greedy, etc.

    I’m not saying that this situation has been fabricated to make LO look very bad. I’m just saying that if that was their [Buss’] goal, this would be the way to do it.

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  210. to lose one key contributor, mr. buss, may be regarded as a misfortune. to lose two looks like carelessness.

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  211. The loss of Lamar is an issue for the Lakers, but we fans are presenting it as a disaster. When Lamar required so much money to resign he may have endangered the team’s ability to resign both Pau and Kobe in the future – in management’s view. If that is the case, a prudent management would not cave to Lamar’s request and would be willing to risk his loss, if only to prevent a free-fall situation in a couple of years. We can more easily rebuild around a missing Lamar next year, than losing either Pau or Kobe later.

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  212. “So the only nugget I can report is that according to Buss Jr., Andrew Bynum is not only a good shot blocker but also a great “shot alternator” (sic).”

    Oh god, someone keep Joey Buss from talking.

    And here’s to hoping the blazers would rather rekindle their heinrich talks than make a serious run at Lamar.

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  213. Next years Lakers, should they end up without Odom and Ariza, but with Artest and a healthy Bynum, will likely be better than the roster that played, and won, the finals. So relax a little.

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  214. 182) Craig W,
    “If they were to listen to us,”

    Speak for yourself!! If they had listened to me, they would have gone undefeated last season!!

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  215. Forced change is often seen as a crisis in successful businesses, but it is also a chance to reshape it for even more success down the road.

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  216. hey friends, let’s keep things positive! this just means that next season will be just as interesting, if not more interesting, than last season. things get boring when you’re too good, anyway. this gives us a challenge. that’s what it’s about. the journey. always remember that.

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  217. Call me crazy, but what about sign-and-trade for Boozer? Throw in some other pieces, as well.

    Essentially, does anyone think something involving Boozer and Odom will go down? Not likely, I’m sure, but damn… how many fans of other teams would cry their eyes out.

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  218. #217 Shaky, not to give Joey Buss props for his public speeches, but in this case it was Jim Buss, director of player personnel if I’m not mistaken. He also said that Morrison got his bad injury in his rookie season until Joel corrected him.

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  219. J-Man,

    The whole point of Utah trading Boozer is to not take any salary back. It’s why they need teams like Portland and OKC to absorb some contracts with their cap space.

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  220. Here’s where I think the Lakers might be considering:

    Plan A: sign Lamar, This has been discussed in great detail, but now may be off the table.

    Plan B: allow Lamar to sign with the Heat for MLE. Immediate benefits only relate to reduced luxury tax.

    The Lakers could only use 2 expiring contracts (Morrison + Farmar) to trade for a quality ($7 million) veteran replacement for Lamar–unlikely until mid season.

    The Heat would take on a substantial luxury tax burden this year while still wanting to add Boozer and extend Wade–and still not meeting Lamar’s stated contract demands.

    Plan C: Heat/Lakers sign and trade: Lamar + Farmar for Beasley + Blount.

    This would give Lamar his salary demands (or close) without costing the Heat any more luxury tax this season.

    The Lakers would now have about $18 million in expiring contracts to trade this year–which could land one or two key veteran players from teams needing to shed salary for next year. These 3 players could also be “rented” for one year on a sort of trial basis.

    Plan C would appear to be the biggest win-win-win for all three parties–but difficult to put together.

    Which plan will it be?

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  221. dave in hillsboro July 17, 2009 at 5:55 am

    “Which plan will it be?”

    Plan A.

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  222. 212 – As far as big man skill at 21, I guess we define “skill” differently. Dwight was definitely just athletic/dominating, I agree. But Shaq, IMO, was very skilled. Yes, he was big, but he had a soft touch and some finesse moves and used that power correctly – he did everything offensively that Dwight doesn’t. And I’d say Kareem at 21 was probably much more skilled than Drew – arguably the greatest college player of all time. Also, at 21 Darius Miles was one of the most skilled wing player in the country. Could do almost anything on the court. Jus’ saying.

    But I definitely agree, Bynum will grow smarter and play more intelligently in a few years, and it’ll make a huge difference. Plus with Pau and Kobe, he doesn’t get the touches he needs to accelerate his growth. I don’t know if you can build a championship around him, but I think he’ll one day be one of the cornerstones of an elite team.

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  223. Now that it seems a done deal that Utah will keep Millsap, if I’m Portland, I just can’t see them going after Lamar for the $ and number of years that Lamar wants.

    Aldridge plays major minutes and wants big $. Portland needs to assume Oden will develop. Prizbilla is needed for Oden insurance (unlike Pau, Aldridge can’t play center). Lamar would play no more than 20 minutes a game, to pay Lamar $9-10 million for 4-5 years is a luxury Portland can’t really afford with major issues in signing Roy and Aldridge to long-term deals.

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  224. If the summer league became the regular season, the Warriors would be a potential dynasty.

    http://myespn.go.com/blogs/truehoop/0-42-88/Anthony-Bests-Anthony.html

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  225. Check out this article by Israel Gutierrez of the Miami Herald, it’s really interesting to see to what extent a ‘lakers lite’ could be built.

    The latest involves the somewhat — depending on who or what you read — possibility of Miami acquiring Carlos Boozer, a post-threat power forward from Utah, and Lamar Odom, a familiar and versatile forward who helped jump-start the latest era of Heat basketball in 2003-04.

    Other than declaring the summer of 2010 old news, which is weird because it’s still a year away, the Heat making those two moves would be following a new trend.

    Call it the Lakers design.

    The NBA isn’t as much a copycat league as the NFL, but this easily could be sold as a case attempting to build a champion in the almost exact mold of the most recent champion.

    Let’s piece this together and see just how similar looking it leaves this potential Heat team to the NBA champion Lakers.

    ………………..

    Playing the role of Kobe Bryant would be Dwyane Wade, last year’s scoring champ whose increasingly diverse game has him on par with Bryant in almost every category.

    Playing the role of Pau Gasol would be Boozer, whose career all-around numbers are similar to Gasol’s, only Boozer wouldn’t come with the ”soft” label that it took an NBA championship for Gasol to shake.

    Playing the role of Odom would be, well, Odom. Is there a need to draw comparisons there? At point guard, Mario Chalmers is no Derek Fisher, but he does have similar qualities in that his best attribute is his defense and he has a knack for hitting big shots. And the rest of the supporting role would include Beasley — who, like Andrew Bynum, has endless potential and can carry the team for brief stretches — Daequan Cook, James Jones and Jermaine O’Neal.

    That’s not even considering any other additions the Heat could make.

    It would be Lakers Southeast (though there is something of a gap between Phil Jackson and Erik Spoelstra), and it would elevate Miami into the same stratosphere as Cleveland, Boston and Orlando. Nothing would be guaranteed. Not when those other three teams have thoroughly improved, as well. But it would be what Wade has asked for: a chance.

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  226. Samy,

    Did you see my post (#225)?

    What you are describing is what I called Plan B. I think that Lamar, Riley, and maybe the Lakers would prefer Plan C.

    What do you think? Could it happen?

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  227. In my opinion I honestly don’t see LO coming back as a Laker as much as that pains me to say. I view this from a pure financial viewpoint. Buss wouldn’t be paying LO 9 million, he’d be paying 18 million due to luxury tax reasons. I see the offer as something as Buss wanting to keep the team together but ultimately doesn’t want to pay that much money to keep him. We might end up getting Sean May as AM 570 has reported him working out for the Lakers.

    That to me says the Lakers organization is preparing to move on, otherwise I don’t see Buss pulling an offer off the table simply because he felt disrespected by LO & his agent. Hopefully I’m wrong though but unless LO signs soon, I don’t see it happening.

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  228. What a mistake by LO and his agent if this is about money. He just lost himself 10 million dollars. Not a very good businessman if you ask me.

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  229. 226, Snoopy – call me a heretic, but I’ve been thinking that I’m not sure how Curry will fit on the Warriors since they already have an undersized 2 who can shoot the lights out in Anthony Morrow

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  230. The Lakers current salary is $84M + $14M in luxury tax = $98M. That is not only a lot of cabbage, but is tops in the league, I think. This is without Lamar Odom.

    drrayeye, I think this argues against your plan #C. If Buss is going to pay substantially more luxury tax, I think the Lakers will want a very integrated and effective return for that extra cash. Only Lamar can yield this. Other players must learn to fit themselves into the Laker system.

    I think this salary figure argues for Plans #A or #B.

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  231. Incidentally, Boston is at $79M, New Orleans at $78M (no wonder they are not active this summer) along with Orlando, and Cleveland is at $77M.

    Miami is at $70M, so they are at the Luxury Tax level.

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  232. Craig,

    I think that the Lakers clearly wanted a Lamar Odom deal in the range of the MLE–for the reasons that you mentioned. When they were drawn higher and higher, they finally rebelled. Unless Lamar himself asks the Lakers to reconsider at significantly lower amounts than the final offer, I think Plan A will stay off the table.

    Which leads to Plan B. However, neither Lamar not the Heat especially like Plan B–and the Lakers are not enthralled to lose Lamar either.

    Wich leads to Plan C.

    I personally find all three credible.

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  233. More and more, I think that money is not the main issue with Odom. I think that he doesn’t especially want to stay with the Lakers, but will if they pay him enough. If they aren’t willint to, he is OK with going somewhere else for less money.

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  234. If the Lakers could get Beasley, they might have to bite the bullet.

    Riley is desperate to keep DWade in Miami, unless Lamar wants to take less to play there, that leaves the S&T.

    Still, this is depressing.

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  235. Rough off-season.

    I still am hoping the Lakers and L.O. reach an agreement, but if not hopefully Mitch can work some magic, the guy has a good track record lately.

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  236. exhelodrvr,
    Lamar has never expressed frustration with playing on the Laker team. The only thing I can think of is that his agent is putting in his mind that he is better than he has shown over the years and he wants to make a run at being the #2 guy again in Miami.

    He failed that test in Los Angeles and we needed to get Pau. Perhaps he would like another try – he sure won’t get it here.

    This would seem to be a really stupid reason for all this commotion, but, perhaps.

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  237. I read on one of those twitter pages, daily news, or pincus, that the Lakers are done with LO, looking elsewhere, and working out Sean May…?? I guess he was a lottery pick who was kind of a bust, anyone know anyhting more about this? how would this work? is he on a team currently? does he have potential?
    thoughts??

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  238. 238, it’s mostly years that is the issue. Lamar wants a long term commitment from the Lakersl; the Lakers don’t want to give him a long term commitment. I don’t see any basis whatsoever for your saying he doesn’t want to be on the team.

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  239. I’m beginning to resign myself to the fact that we may very well carry out the ring ceremony without Trevor and LO. What a shame.

    I think in LO’s situation winning is not a huge consideration any longer, because he has a ring now. And we all know that Lamar isn’t the most driven guy in the world.

    There is part of me that thinks that Jerry Buss never really wanted the payroll that high, and that both Trevor and LO weren’t courted as thoroughly as perhaps they could have been. MLE-money for a few years was all the FO was prepared to offer.

    This team is may become Bynum/Kobe/Pau + assorted role players at discount prices. For better or for worse, it seems.

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  240. Zephid,
    I suspect you are right. However, with Pau and Kobe contracts coming up and Bynum’s deal being only three years, the Laker’s can’t afford to make another large commitment of money over a long time. I don’t see this ending well for Lamar unless he changes his tune.

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  241. talk abt miami coming close to a 9mio offer for lamar over at espn.. how is this possible?

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  242. Zephid (243),

    I do see some basis in ex’s position. Remember LO’s initial reaction to coming off the bench? It’s reasonable to surmise that he just doesn’t like coming off the bench.

    Moreover, surely he realizes that as a front court bench player behind Pao and Bynum, his minutes are bound to decrease as Bynum strengthens and improves. In fact, his minutes might decrease significantly and quickly enough to the point that he becomes superfluous and expendable, i.e., trade fodder for other needs in the near future–point guard leaps to mind.

    So, it may not be that he dissatisfied with L.A., per say, but doubtful about his long-term sustainability here. He has more control in a setting where he can start and demonstrate his worth.

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  243. snoopy,

    Shaq –i will agree with you that Shaq had incredible skill. Still not on the same level as Bynum at the same age though. Not to mention that Shaq is an all-time top 10 player!

    I must concede that i’m not old enough to even remember Kareem playing basketball, nevertheless Kareem at 21 years old, lol.

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  244. I agree with Zephid and Craig – years has to be the issue. With the collective bargaining agreement set to expire in two seasons contract length is going to loom large in any negotiation as teams don’t want to over commit to players and players want that extra security beyond 2011 when the union is likely to make several concessions to the league in regards to contract length and annual raise percentage. The Lakers have set themselves up well in this regard with it’s deals for Sasha and Bynum (and maybe Artest – depending on how he uses his player option). And they’re surely trying to do the same thing with Odom. Pau’s contract exprires right when the CBA would be renewed, so he’ll probably feel the effects of this most as he’s a major piece of the puzzle and will be looking for a re-up. It will actually be very interesting to see if Pau’s agent looks for an extention next summer (ala Kobe this summer) rather than going into his FA year with so much uncertainty surrounding the future of player contracts and the CBA negotiations.

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  245. …guess no one has any thoughts about my post at 242…I’m asking these basketball minds about the scenario the Lakers are moving on, frmo LO, working out Sean May, and how this might work? don’t know much about him, but this was the midnight twitter buzz, between pincus and that chick at the daily news…

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  246. Also, Kaveh, a player that never gets his due at that age is Duncan. He came into the league at 21 and was instantly and all NBA player with tremendous skill on both offense and defense. People also forget that he was pretty athletic (not Amare or Howard like but still) as he hadn’t suffered any of those knee/ankle injuries yet. I really like Bynum, and he’s showing increased polish, but it’s a bit hyperbole to say he’s the most skilled big at his age. Besides Duncan, I think Bill Walton would be in that conversation as well.

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  247. Is it really possible for Miami to offer the same amount the Lakers are offering ($9 million)? How would that be possible?!

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  248. Sean May’s professional story (from wiki):
    In April 2005, May declared that he would forgo his senior year at UNC to enter the NBA Draft. He was selected 13th overall by the Charlotte Bobcats, becoming one of a record four Tar Heels to be lottery picks in the 2005 NBA Draft. He started his professional career strongly by being named MVP of the Rocky Mountain Revue summer league. An injury in December, however, cut his rookie season short. On October 5, 2007, May announced that he had decided to have micro fracture surgery on his right knee and would likely miss the entire 2007-08 NBA season,[3] which is what occurred.[4] The effects of the surgery affected him the following season (2008-09), as he experienced conditioning problems,[5][6][7][8][9] tiredness,[10] and tendinitis.[11] On December 30, 2008, May was deemed physically unfit to play, making Bobcats coach Larry Brown place him on the inactive list for the foreseeable future.[4] On June 23, 2009, ESPN News reported that the Charlotte Bobcats declined to make a qualifying offer for the 4 year of his rookie contract, making him an unrestricted free agent.

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  249. Darius,

    Duncan is a power forward, but i get your point. Duncan was a great talent at 21. But then again, Duncan is also a top 10 player of all time. The point of my post was to say that Bynum’s potential warranted a contract extension. The fact that people have to bring out KAreem, Duncan and Shaq is evidence of that reality in my book.

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  250. (245) (251) The Heat can offer Lamar any amount under a sign and trade–see my Plan C above (#225).

    Would the Lakers participate? Only under the right circumstances–but they’d have to be interested–no?

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  251. no no NO to sean may. He is like a poor man’s Glen Davis, body-type and all

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  252. Craig,
    “Lamar has never expressed frustration with playing on the Laker team”

    He did last off-season; he wasn’t thrilled about coming off of the bench. I’m sure that he still isn’t thrilled about it.

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  253. Aaron, 253,

    I agree that I would prefer to see Fisher coming off the bench. But there is no point guard in the league I would rather have taking a pressure-packed money shot than Derek Fisher.

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  254. 242. Sean May is the kind of guy you get for the Vet’s minimum. I would put it this way, he’s no Josh Powell.

    Re: Miami and the $9 mil, Drrayeye is correct, the only way that is happening is a sign and trade. And the only reason for the Lakers to do that is they get something back in return that is worth it. Without it, Miami can only offer th MLE ($5.8).

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  255. Sean May did have some good PER ratings in his first two years, though there is a sample size alert. The Lakers just might get a bang for their buck.

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  256. Sign and trade: I suspect Miami would have to get another club involved to pull this off. The other club would have to provide a trade exemption to the Lakers, as the Lakers are not going to take on an equivalent $9M-$11M just to help out Lamar. I see the Lakers taking on no more salary than the MLE in any Lamar trade and that MLE better be able to provide upside, i.e. Beasley.

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  257. Coffee is for Closers July 17, 2009 at 10:41 am

    I heard the bucher interview on 710 last night, and with all sports talk radio, there’s a bit of wanting to stir it up. it was obvious from bucher’s comment that “the lakers never offered a 4th year, because if they had, we wouldn’t be having this conversation” that he’s obviously being fed information from LO’s agent.

    like others have said, he’s been consistently wrong when it comes to lakers inside info, so his comment that the lakers have moved on is be taken with a huge grain of salt.

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  258. Maybe LO would rather reign in hell- start for a team where success is defined as getting out of the first round versus serving in heaven- 6th man on a Championship team.

    Disease of me strikes again.

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  259. I agree with Darius/Zephid/Craig that it’s the years. Everywhere I look now, even ESPN, it says the Lakers never offered the 4th yr…despite what Ramona and ETeaford keep saying. Even Bucher, Stein, Pincus, etc., keep saying the issue is the 4th year. If you are gonna offer 3, I don’t see the big deal for the 4th. I can see 5 and 3 being a bigger deal, almost twice as long, but just one more year at 4? That seems unreasonable.

    None of this should surprise us tho the way LA handled Trevor. Sure, his agent was being obnoxious and I hated the media play right off the bat, but, LA didn’t even bother to stick around for more than a few hours it seems. Right to Artest. Trevor agreed literally like 30 minutes after Artest did, more like a reactive move instead of an actual decision. I just don’t like how that all unfolded. I get the whole not wanting to be left without options, but dismissing Trevor almost a day into free agency was a little abrupt if you ask me. Now we may be just letting LO walk? Sorry I don’t subscribe to any theory whatsoever that makes this better or interesting…like Kurt said, a lot has to go right by replacing 2 of our top 5 players with 1 mercurial talent, even if that talent is extraordinary.

    Maybe all this worrying is for naught though…who knows. I’ve been seeing unsubstantiated rumors everywhere for the last few days (like LO never asked for 5/50, never offered 4, to turning down 3 and 4, meeting Buss in Hawaii to speak mano y mano, signing 4/36, 5/33 to the Heat, etc). Who the hell knows what’s actually happening. Seems like a lot of public, and private, posturing to me. The whole notion that Buss is offended by a lack of a response or what he considered an unreasonable request from Odom, or his agent talked to MIA/DAL when they told him to find other offers, it just reeks of nonsense.

    These grown men are playing children’s games now…be a man, suck it up, and get this ****** thing done. Like Hollinger said, they keep raising the pot with weak hands and nowhere else to go. The best option for both sides is standing right in from of the other.

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  260. 258, so you’re basing this surmise on one statement Lamar made in the off-season, even though he didn’t make a peep when the season started, throughout the entire season, and all the way through our playoff run?

    And Darius makes a good point about the CBA expiring. When the owners opt out of the CBA next December, they’re going to install a much more team-friendly CBA. This will lead to smaller contracts, less of them guaranteed, and more incentives. Lamar wants to lock in as much value as he possibly can, now, given that in a couple years, he may never have the chance to make this kind of money again.

    For those making the, “what if we can’t re-up Kobe and Pau” argument, keep in mind that Ammo’s, Fisher’s, and Vujacic’s EC’s will all expire or have expired by the summer of 2011. That’s $15 million extra dollars that we can spread around. Assuming both Kobe and Pau extend their contracts for the max, they each get a raise of 10.5% the following year. That’ll be $2.4 million for Kobe, and $1.7 million for Pau. So even after all the extensions, we’ve still got more than $11 million more than we have to work with now.

    So we’re really only biting the bullet big time for this coming year. After that, we have enough mid-size contracts coming off the books that our payroll will be down to a much more sane level, albeit still as a taxpayer.

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  261. We may have mid-sized contracts coming off the books, but we still need 13 players on the squad and we would like them to be somewhat serviceable players who can function in the triangle.

    Andrew only got three years for a reason – the Lakers wanted to reduce the risk he may be injury prone. Lamar will only get three years because he is 30 and not a one/two/three option on this club.

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  262. 1.) If Portland successfully targets another player and uses up their capspace, then Odom’s leverage pretty much disappears and he may be forced to take whatever the Lakers give him.
    2.) If Portland targets Odom, then his leverage increases.

    To me, the course of action Odom/agent Jeff Schwartz have taken rests on their perception of the free agent strategies of both Portland and New York.

    Remember: Having not taken LAL’s offer, Odom/Schwartz really believe there is a better offer out there. To secure the best deal possible, they assume the Blazers are going to make Odom an offer; and they assume that eventually they can pry their ideal contract from either LAL or Portland. So:

    1.) Odom/Schwartz assume Portland targets Odom after Millsap.
    Or:
    2.) Odom/Schwartz assume Portland targets David Lee after Millsap. And they assume the Knicks are going match an offer sheet for David Lee or sign-and-trade him for expiring contracts/picks.
    And:
    3.) Odom/Schwartz assume Portland will eventually make them an offer.

    If Schwartz is worth his salt as an agent, he’ll have foreseen this scenario. If he fails, he will have cost his client a lot of money.

    If this is the scenario Buss has in mind, too, then it explains why he pulled the offer. Portland’s contract offer would probably start low, and not at $9M.

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  263. so, will our role players come from the draft? Journeymen? Europe?

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  264. #254. Kaveh,
    I see your point. I too think Bynum has the potential to be a special talent. And for that, you pay him.

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  265. “Lamar already knows how I feel,” Wade said. “I really don’t know how to feel”

    And people wonder why athletes get a rep for being empty headed.

    If Lamar leaves, he leaves. Past champions have dealt with more.

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  266. OT, Tiger misses the cut at the Open!…Noooo!

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  267. 267

    “258, so you’re basing this surmise on one statement Lamar made in the off-season, even though he didn’t make a peep when the season started, throughout the entire season, and all the way through our playoff run?”

    It’s one thing to do that for one season, with the possibility of a first ever championship as the carrot – especially when you’re still getting starter’s minutes (and even taking over as a starter for half the season, as it turns out). However, if he stays with the Lakers he will be committing to that role for the rest of his career, and if Bynum stays healthy and develops as expected Odom’s minutes and importance will surely dwindle as well.

    Obviously nobody knows what Odom is thinking, but it is entirely possible that he is hesitant to spend the rest of his career as a backup. The fact that he held his tongue last season doesn’t prove otherwise. I can definitely see where exhelodrvr is coming from with that theory.

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  268. 266. Chise, it is the Lakers themselves that are saying they offered four years. Odom’s people are saying they never did. Maybe one side is lying, maybe the Lakers offered three with a team option for four.

    Again, anybody who tells Stein or Ramona or anyone something is doing so for a reason, to promote their side. It’s like watching cable news and thinking the Republican or Democrat brought on to talk about health care is really telling you the entire truth. They are spinning some truth, using some scare tactics and doing whatever else works to make their point. Honestly, we will likely never know the truth.

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  269. If I were the Lakers my stance would be NO sign-and-trade. If LO leaves it’ll be for the MLE leaving a significant amount of money on the table from the Lakers.

    I would make it clear his choices are A) to sign for the MLE with another club or B) sign with the Lakers for whatever it is they are offering (much more than the MLE even if it’s not what he is looking for).

    This way the gray areas of “how much can I get if I do a sign-and-trade” are eliminated and there are two finite options. And it’s another way of telling him ‘you can’t have your cake and eat it too’.

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  270. 276,

    That’s definitely a good way to draw a line in the sand. What would make it an even stronger statement would be to go ahead and sign someone to a veteran’s minimum immediately, as well.

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  271. 276,

    So our justification for not doing is a sign-and-trade is so we can stick it to Lamar? If we hit a point in which differences become irreconcilable, then taking a sign-and-trade is better than dealing with the reality that Josh Powell (or Joe Smith, Drew Gooden, or Chris Wilcox) will be our first big man off the bench. I’m not entirely comfortable with that.

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  272. Yes, the Lakers are a sports industry cash cow. But they’re not the New York Yankees and their bank account has its limits. Simply put, the Lakers can’t afford to give ace-like salaries to their No. 4 or 5 pitchers, if you will.

    They’ve already committed huge money to Kobe and Pau as options 1 and 2, with Bynum getting No. 3 money and the expectation that he’ll develop into that third key star. Artest would be a top two or three player on most teams, so he’s a bargain as the Lakers’ fourth option getting the MLE.

    I think the world of Odom and would like to see him back, but let’s face it — there’s only one ball on the floor.

    Would Odom get enough floor time to warrant $9 million a year? Perhaps, but at who’s expense?

    If management has committed to Bynum — which it has to the tune of $58 million over four years — paying $9 million a year for a sixth-man is a lot of money, even more so given the luxury tax.

    If Bynum and Pau are healthy and effective, Odom’s role would lessen. $18 million a season is lot to spend on a guy who’s not your best (or second-best) player, not your top box office draw and not your star of the future.

    If money weren’t an issue, this is a different story – bring Lamar back for depth and insurance against injury should another big go down. But the market doesn’t show he’s a $9 million player now, and even if his loss makes the team seem weaker on the floor next season, I understand where Mitch and Buss are coming from in taking a hard line here.

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  273. 274, it’s one thing to claim that something is a possibility. It is another thing altogether to claim that you are certain of it. I’m not saying you did, Joel, but exhelodrvr clearly says that he is sure.

    Yes, there is a possibility that Lamar feels that way, but I think that’s extrapolating one statement a little too far.

    I’m not so sure about Lamar wanting a bigger role. His well-documented lack of focus seems to me like evidence to the contrary. If he was so focused on the limelight, it would seem he should be more intense while on the court. He just seems much too “laissez-faire” for me to believe that his lack of a bigger role would affect his decision.

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  274. how are the heat able to offer 5 years 35 mil, is that what odom would receive with a sign and trade?

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  275. Fans continually present the sign-and-trade as an option better than letting Lamar walk. With a current salary base of $84M, before luxury tax, that is not really the case.

    A sign-and-trade will cost the Lakers an additional $9M-$11M this year, and possibly have ramifications in the future. This is above any salary they have to take on in the trade. This is why a sign-and-trade must include a trade exemption that actually saves the Lakers twice the amount of the exemption. Without this the sign-and-trade has very little value to the Lakers.

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  276. At this point, I just have to say what I’m sure is on many other fans’ minds – I’m not sure I can take another week of this waiting on tenterhooks. The whole range of rumors flying at this point is getting quite dizzying, and when you’re as hopeful for LO coming back as I am, you can easily lose your self-control and check FBG/ESPN/Yahoo etc every five minutes.

    I’ll say one thing that I don’t think has been said yet, and it’s really one of my main reasons for wanting Lamar back (outside of the fact that he just plain makes us better)- the Lakers were fun to watch when LO was on the court. It’s probably just me seeing what the stats have already said, but they seemed to play with more energy and a more exciting game with LO around. This is the same reason why I was sad to see Ariza go, because I’m fairly certain Ron Artest won’t generate as many fast breaks as TA did, but to lose the fun of watching both TA and LO in a three week timespan will be tough to deal with.

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  277. 283,

    A sign-and-trade would have a big payroll hit this year and not in the long-term. We’re getting back the same total in salary that we would have used to sign Lamar in any case. So if hypothetically Miami traded us Beasley and Blount’s expiring, we would only have a significant luxury tax hit this year until Blount’s contract expires (and this would give us about $15 million in expiring contracts this year to throw about).

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  278. 278. Not to stick it to Lamar, to discourage him from seeking a sign-and-trade.

    And yes, to say “we’re not going to enable you to leave. If you want to get above the MLE you need to deal with us.” I just think it narrows his options–not to be jerkoffs to him–but as a negotiating tool, even if it may be considered ‘hardball’.

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  279. Kurt (275): I agree. We may never know. I’m just of the opinion it has to be the years because I do not see any conceivable way he’s serious about taking 5/33 (and change) over 4/36 IF that was actually offered.

    WRT this somehow hampering our ability to keep Kobe or Gasol…please. Those guys are top 10/15 talents in the league. The FO will not squabble over dollars with either no matter how far we’re over the tax (unless they’re like 35-38, which is further along than we are talking regarding the championship window we are in right now). And as Zephid pointed out, first year extension cannot be over X percent of the previous year…not that much of a big deal.

    A couple other things I find somewhat peculiar to do…blame the tax that will be incurred. The ridiculous contracts we gave out to Sasha, Luke, and Radman are just as much to blame for the tax as whatever we give LO . And Jerry Buss has an estimated net work of at least 380 million (a few years back on the numbers but haven’t heard he’s lost money on the Lakers so figure it’s higher).

    http://www.usatoday.com/sports/basketball/nba/2005-salary-owners.htm

    He gave 8 million to USC last year (guess he used to teach there. Gives away a lot of money to charities, poker tourneys, etc. Even brags about how much he’ll spend for Lakers (and this was before the championship)…

    http://articles.latimes.com/2008/nov/10/sports/sp-buss10

    I just cannot see how he’s hurting for money or will ever be (Lakers are worth over 600 million where he could conceivably sell if he ever gets in a bind). I don’t know. Like we always say, it’s not my money, but the guy supposedly pockets some $40 million dollars as profit every year. And we’ve constantly been tax payers. I’m hopeful this just gets done/resolved soon because it’s driving me nuts (it shouldn’t but I can’t help it I love the Lakers/NBA).

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  280. Hasn’t this been a great off-season so far, lots to talk about and waiting to see what happends in Lakerland. Much better than last year for sure, in my book at least.

    “Nothing gives a person so much advantage over another as to remain always cool and unruffled under all circumstances.” – unknown

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  281. If the Lakers are openly willing to do a sign-and-trade then Miami’s a viable option for Lamar and another rival to the Lakers for his services.

    Without a sign-and-trade the only option for Lamar and the only competition for the Lakers is Portland.

    If Lamar says “I’m not coming back, I don’t want to be here even if it means settling for the MLE” then the Lakers have two choices: call his bluff or take it at face value.

    Then either Lamar or the Lakers can initiate talks about a sign-and-trade that may benefit both parties. But those are entierely different negotiations than the ones the Lakers should concern themselves with and should be a last resort

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  282. Lamar is a great fit in Miami. That’s one of the few teams where he’ll actually be almost as valuable as he is to the Lakers. That team has a superstar in Wade, a legit low-post scoring option in O’Neal, an up-and-coming scoring machine in Beasley, and a bunch of role-player shooters (Cook, Jones, Quinn, Chalmers). They even got their bruiser/enforcer in Haslem. Lamar wouldn’t need to be a scorer on that team, he would simply need to once again be a glue guy who rebounds, ignites a fast break and sets up his teammates.

    http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?id=4336149

    From my understanding, the 5 years $35mil deal offered to Odom is -almost- as good as the Lakers’ offer (I stress ‘almost’) because of the lack of taxes and maybe extra incentives (like a signing bonus?) And with the current CBA expiring very soon, I can see how Lamar would jump on that.

    P.S.

    Sean May is a terrible fit. I’m surprised our FO is working him out. The guy has had his work ethic and conditioning questioned since the draft night when he was taken.

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  283. 280 zephid

    Laissez-faire means “hands off.” It doesn’t mean lazy. In economic terms it means a purely free market economy. I think it came when a Frenchman responded to some government official and said “laissez-faire,” meaning keep your hands off of my decisions/money/property/business.

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  284. 5/34-35 is the MLE with it’s 10% a year raises.

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  285. (288) Orlando can offer more than the MLE. They got an exemption from the Hedo deal. I’m surprized they haven’t expressed interest.

    It’s hard for Portland to go over $10 million for an FA–and would be especially difficult for them to give multiple years for a player so much older than everyone else.

    Miami may be the only team that actually wants Lamar-and they can’t go over the MLE without talking with the Lakers. Of course, who would be more knowledgeable about such negotiations than Pat Riley?

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  286. if we lose LO without a s&t, what are the chances of us picking up something better than what we can get with an LO-s&t when the trade deadline comes around (when we can benefit from teams trading when they’re weakened / panicking)?

    the blazers are probably better off not signing LO for the sake of what they can pick up before the trade deadline of feb ’10. but they have capspace and trade-friendly assets and we don’t.

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  287. 294: drrayeye: No Orlando cannot. That’s a trade exception…not injury. I don’t think trade exceptions can be used to sign players outright.

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  288. 289.

    Like LO, O’Neal, Beasley, & Haslem are best at the 4 spot. I don’t see how LO would be a natural fit with a bunch of guys who play his position.

    Has far as May is concerned, we need to sign a warm body with the vet minimum to meet our roster requirements. May had enough talent to dominate college and get drafted in the lottery, so why not take a look?

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  289. (293) Chise, maybe I’m confused, but I thought that the whole purpose of participating in the multiteam deal was to have an exemption that could be used to sign another player instead of nothing. Why else would Orlando have participated?

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  290. Stuck In Alabama July 17, 2009 at 1:53 pm

    Laissez-Faire means “let do”

    Trickle down economics.

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  291. 290, laissez-faire means “let it be,” in which case I was referring to Lamar being a very “if it happens, it happens” type guy. And I didn’t intend it to mean lazy, even in the slightest. It was supposed to mean that he doesn’t really care about stuff that much.

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  292. drrayeye (1:50)- The trade exception. I’m not sure if it can be packaged or not, but either way, Orlando has a huge trade exception it can send to any team and take back players (around Turk’s first year salary as part of the sign and trade). They just didn’t want to lose Turk for nothing.

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  293. Ugh…that’s two comments awaiting moderation now.

    Drrayeye: to not lose Turk for nothing basically. They can send the exception to other teams and take back players.

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  294. Using Orlando as a third team (not likely, as they are currently at $78M) would allow Miami to give the Lakers one lower salaried player and Orlando one lower salaried player – Orlando would give the Lakers the trade exemption – Lakers would give Miami Lamar. The Lakers receive one lower salaried player and the trade exemption and Orlando gets an additional player to help their team.

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  295. French Teacher speaking here:

    Laisser-faire means let do, let be, hands-off in the sense of non-interventionism; it’s the opposite of regulate or intervene.

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  296. This is killing me. With Artest and Lamar, I believe we should be overwhelming favorites to repeat– four all-stars or potential all-stars in the starting line-up as well as the second best 6th man in the league, along with 3 very different 7 footers to mix and match. Without Lamar, I think we’ll fade back into the pack with the Spurs, Denver, Boston, and maybe Portland. Doesn’t mean we can’t repeat, but I’d see it as fortuitous, rather than predestined. Please, LO, please!!

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  297. http://lakersblog.latimes.com/lakersblog/2009/07/like-the-facebook-status-of-a-girl-angry-at-her-boyfriend-free-agency-its-complicated.html

    what’s the FB&G consensus is on the actual offer to LO that buss pulled off the table. bucher / stein or LAT / LADN?

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  298. RE Trade Exceptions: They occur when the team trading a player sends that player to a team with cap space to absorb the contract without having to give back the “equal or within X million + 125%” contract(s) back in the trade. When talking about Orlando/Toronto, the Raptors were under the cap so they accepted a trade for Turk and allowed Orlando to receive a trade exception. Many times, this type of deal is done because the team doing the trading owns the players Bird’s Rights which entitles him to higher raises than if the team with cap-space signed them outright. Basically, the contract that Orland signed Turk to (and then traded) was worth more than any contract that Toronto could have signed Turk to outright. This is a win/win for the player and the team that trades that player because the player gets a bigger contract and the team gets a trade exception. AND the team that receives the player in the trade get’s their man. Everyone is happy.

    As for why Orlando would want a large trade exception: Just look at what the Sonics did two seasons ago when they acquired Kurt Thomas from the Suns. When the “Sonics” signed and traded Rashard Lewis to Orlando, they generated a large trade exception. That exception allowed them to take the salary of Kurt Thomas off the hands of the Suns who were looking to dump payroll because of the luxury tax. But, in order to get the Sonics to bite on that deal, Phoenix had to include TWO first round picks! Basically, by simply using their heads and getting Orlando to agree to a S&T, the Sonics were able to get two first round picks. Fast forward to Orlando/Toronto and the Hedo S&T, and you can see why Orlando might want a large trade exception. That exception can be a valuable asset when not only improving your team this season (Team X dumping high priced Vet to shed payroll), but it can also be an asset to improve your team in the future (take on salary of player X, but only if you throw in some cash or draft picks to make it happen).

    Sorry for the long post, I’m kinda bored of talking Lamar.

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  299. 303, well then, seems to me as though we’re all correct. Thanks Laker Kev.

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  300. Sorry, I’m back to talk more LO apparently.

    han, I would bet that all sources are right, they’re just talking to different people from the different camps. My bet is that the LATimes and Daily News are getting fed their info from the Team. And I bet the team isn’t being 100% honest because I would almost guarantee that any fourth year is either a team option or only partially guaranteed. I would also bet that the ESPN guys are getting their info from the Agent. And that the Agent isn’t being 100% honest because they probably have recieved a 4 year offer, it’s just not a guaranteed 4 years. What I do like though, is that neither side is really giving up the entire story and that leads me to believe that there is still wiggle room to work this out. Once you leak everything and everyone knows every detail, you really pin the other side against the wall and don’t allow them to save face in the end. This can lead to hard feelings and deals falling apart even if both sides would rather it didn’t – pride can be a tough hurdle to get over.

    Also, that LAT report mentions Bucher’s famous reports on Kobe back during that spat. Who would doubt that Bucher’s “sources” saying Kobe would never play for the Lakers again was Kobe’s Agent or people in his camp? I bring this up because as the LAT report claims, beat writers normally are more tied in locally and usually have sources inside a team. National guys like Stein or Bucher usually have sources in certain teams, but also have Agents as a lot of their primary sources. I really am bored.

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  301. Ode to Odom

    A versatile big man
    Who can play just about every spot.
    An energetic enigma
    Who can contribute without a shot.

    From high price near all star
    To too soft to win when needed.
    All of those perceptions changed
    When this year our team succeeded.

    We witnessed the inconsistent,
    But more frequently all the good.
    Other teams questioned your heart
    But we true fans understood.

    We thought it was time
    For you to sign on for more glory.
    But apparently you and your agent
    Wanted to write a different story.

    You wanted more money
    So Buss upped the MLE to $9.
    You wanted more years
    So Mitch offered four and thought, fine.

    Now the trade rumors rumble
    And the winds of change are near.
    The successful number 7
    May be gone many fear.

    So should push come to shove
    And you leave for South Beach,
    Well, we thank you for your efforts
    But know that, for you,
    another ring will be out of reach.

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  302. thanks darius for the additional LO talk. would you mind a bit more of that, my question @ 294? it was in moderation for awhile. thanks again

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  303. 294. Han, it’s really hard to predict who will be available at the trade deadline because it depends on both where teams are in the standings and how they are drawing at the gate (do they need to shed salary). That said, this is the TRADE deadline, meaning you have to give up for what you get. And deals with prospects for front line talent (ala the Gasol deal) are by far the exception, not the rule. Which is my way of saying that some combo of Morrison’s expiring deal and Farmar (or whoever) is not likely to bring you someone of Odom’s quality. And if it does it will come with long term financial costs.

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  304. Good players come and go, its a thing call free agency that makes all this relevant. It will happen to some players you like and some you don’t, the good thing is that another player on the team will get a chance to show how valuable they are to the team next year if LO decides to leave. It is truly up to LO to make the decision to stay or go, not his agent. I can live wtih either decision he makes, being a LAKER fan will carry me through

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  305. Coffee is for Closers July 17, 2009 at 4:04 pm

    This is a great site for all your salary cap questions:

    http://members.cox.net/lmcoon/salarycap.htm#37

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  306. Fun note from here in Vegas (from off the record source): The Clippers FO wants Sessions. The owner has no idea who that is but knows he can sell seats with Iverson. The owner always wins these tug of wars. The FO throws up its hands.

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  307. i do not want this to be a boston 08-09 season that started with significant losses and ended with injuries and an early exit. that said, we got artest and if the mob steps up, we are more or less as gifted as the one last year. those are hinged on significant what ifs.

    if anything, i think the FO knows they have to balance banking and banking to win. so in buss and mitch i trust. God i do hope they are stirring up something suprising and nice…something that will get LO thinking why in the world would he not want to be a laker for more than fair gain. i also agree that s and t hits us for this year, or at least make it so. with blount and other expiring contracts, we get big money for a young prospect and a decent role player by midyear to bolster us to another level. i just don’t want us watching LO walk and think that it’s about economics and we’re still good enough to win it. the league is molding against us and some of them on paper look like they can get ahead of us (looking at the bench).

    i smell something brewing. God please make next week the week when we let this unfold and hold high the purple and gold. great ode btw! GO LAKERS!

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  308. No sweat Zephid, love your posts.

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  309. lol… have the clips officially offered anything to AI? not sure about this, but isn’t it cheaper to offer the MLE to AI than trying to get sessions?

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  310. The sign n trade deal with the Heat is not worth it. Beasley is not a true PF and they have nothing but shooting guards on there roster to package with him. The LAKERS have enough 2 guards and need a quality point, so to me the team would just be taking the same amount in salary back, but not getting a needed asset in return. If the Heat is the only team LO is willing to go to in a sign n trade deal, make him take less money by letting him walk outright. If another team he is willing to go to has a quality point that could be a fixture for years to come, then I say make the move, but otherwise just look for a player at the vet min.

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  311. 296.

    O’Neal does not have the speed or quickness to play against & guard today’s hybrid 4s. He is a center in today’s league. Miami came out and said that Beasley will play next season at the 3 spot – something that should’ve been done from the beginning because he is simply not big enough to man the 4. The only “true” 4 they have is Haslem, who will be the first big off the bench if LO signs.

    As far as May goes, in college he was surrounded by other great college players and not having many taller/bigger defenders on him to defer him from the basket. The guy is injury prone, lacks enthusiasm and hasn’t been in shape since.. ever. He’s not an NBA player as of now (not to say he doesn’t have potential, but his lackadaisical approach to gym has shown teams he’s never gonna live up to it)

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  312. 3 unrestricted FAs – LO, TA, SB – and the Lakers end up with SB. who saw that coming?

    better get ready to use the Veteran’s Minimum for someone who desperately wants to win a ring; e.g., Starbury, Iverson(!), Szczerbiak(?)

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  313. Coffee is for Closers July 17, 2009 at 5:02 pm

    Yes, getting AI to help show your young players like Gordon, Thornton and Griffin how to be a real pro – wii be another brilliant move in the annals of clipper history.

    boston to get marquis daniels – decent pick up for them, a poor man’s james posey.

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  314. Funky Chicken July 17, 2009 at 5:02 pm

    Seems that a lot of folks here only remember the LO from the playoffs and not the LO from the last 4 years. I recall a guy who was thoroughly undependable, who never works to improve his game in the offseason (10 years and counting, no right hand), who misses free throws and smiles about it, and who is every bit as likely to put up 6 points and 8 boards as he is to get a double-double.

    The Lakers don’t need LO to win a title. Their starting 5 will be one of the best the league has ever seen. The same people who only remember LO’s playoff performance seem to only remember Andrew Bynum’s playoff performance. Recall that this kid rounded himself into shape and became a truly dominant center this year (in December and early January) before getting hurt.

    Unless you think he won’t be healthy (and what are you basing that thought on), you should realize that the 2009/10 Lakers will have the best center in the west, the best shooting guard in the west, the best power forward in the west (yes, Duncan is now old) and one of the top 3 small forwards in the west. Seems to me that this group is more than capable of handling the loss of LO’s 12 points per game….

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  315. Coffee is for Closers July 17, 2009 at 5:04 pm

    nba expert ric bucher (smirk) tweets heat have not offered a contract to LO as reported by some.

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  316. If the Clips take Iverson we will officially be back in the Bad Donald era. Sell a few seats this year, reduce the teams flexibility in the future.

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  317. Funky Chicken,
    We fans are always guilty of thinking the immediate past – we can’t remember past the last two months – will determine the future.

    It is a good thing the FO and Phil Jackson realize that team building is a continuing process that doesn’t ever end.

    Fan assumptions:
    – Last year’s bench was fairly mediocre, outside of Lamar; therefore next year’s bench will be mediocre without Lamar.
    – Andrew Bynum couldn’t compete at the highest level in the playoffs, against the best competition; therefore he won’t be able to compete next year.
    – Kobe Bryant’s statistics were down last year; therefore he is starting to go downhill and we need to panic.

    We want simple answers to complex questions and refuse to think beyond the obvious.

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  318. Yes, Lakers probably fo not _need_ Odom to win another championship. But without him it’s gonna to be much harder. The margin of error would be non existant.

    Orlando will be much stronger this season. Howard will be better, Carter>Turkoglu (please, it’s not even close), and the most important part – Nelson will be healthy.

    Boston will be stronger – with healthy Garnett. Of course it will be also older, but the Lakers will be older too.

    Cleveland should be stronger.

    Spurs will be stronger – if Ginobili is healthy.

    Blazers will be more experienced, and they will be stronger too, they will use this $7M for somebody.

    As for Lakers – for my money Artest < Ariza, at least in the context of Lakers needs, offensive system etc. Now subtract Odom, a very efficient and irreplaceable player. What do we get?

    It is true that Gasol/Bryant/Bynum are a supertrio. It is possible that Fisher/Bryant/Artest/Gasol/Bynum is the best starting five. But what about the bench?

    I could live with Walton. Brown should be an OK PG backup. So we are set at the backcourt (when Bryant gets rest we could shift Artest to SG and play Walton at SF). But what about PF/C?

    Powell and Mbenga are basically replacement level. Last season we have one of the deepest frontline. Without Odom we are very thin, even without injuries. And this time an injury means hasta la vista.

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  319. Zephid,
    Sorry, let me rephrase that. I think it is extremely highly likely that Lamar does not want to come off the bench. That is based on his comments last summer, as well as every indication I have ever seen or heard of virtually any athlete. Just because he did a good job coming off the bench, and accepted that role, does not mean that he prefers coming off the bench.

    But you’re right, technically. I am not SURE of it.

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  320. … Now that the Utah Jazz have matched the Portland offer to Paul Millsap, once again the Blazers have money to offer Odom. Portland can present a very competitive offer starting a four-year deal starting at $7.7 million that totals roughly $35 million.

    The Blazers also have the means to go higher both in starting salary (if they waive the rights to unsigned draft picks Joel Freeland and/or Petteri Koponen) and in years.

    Of course at this point there’s no indication the Blazers are willing to make a pitch to Odom.

    One NBA Executive told HOOPSWORLD that Odom doesn’t fit into their culture. He’s just not in the same age bracket as their emerging stars Brandon Roy, LaMarcus Aldridge and possibly Greg Oden.

    Multiple sources say Odom’s people were stalling to see Portland would have money to spend before deciding to renew talks with the Lakers.

    The Miami offer remains in the background to give Lamar some leverage over LA but is still a viable option.

    Ultimately if the Blazers don’t come calling . . . there remains a good possibility Lamar Odom returns to the Lakers.

    From HOOPSWORLD

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  321. Lakers need someone who can take it to the hole….with feeling. Odom can do that. He can hit the 3, quite versatile really. Maybe he’s just testing the market. Would love to see him back.

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  322. If LO eventually comes back to the Lakers, I’m afraid he’ll play as if he’s underpaid…..meaning he won’t have the passion that he displayed in this year’s playoffs.

    Would he have played Game 5 against Houston with a really sore tailbone if he thinks he’s not making what he’s worth?

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  323. chise —Buss’ net worth is estimated at $8 billion by Forbes, not $388 million. In fact the Lakers alone must be worth 500-600 million, so unless he has a lot of debt then $388million is ridiculously low.

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  324. #298 —you are taking the literal translation for each word. Let do has absolutely NO MEANING in the English language. The words are literally correct, but the interpretation is not. By “let do” they mean hands off. I was giving you the interpretation and you gave me the literal word translation.

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  325. I`ve always had my doubts about LO,although he did play better this year(his contract year). I`m not confident that he`s willing to put in the effort in the off season or during the season at age 30+ (with his ring) to warrant a 4year deal at 8+. Let him go to Miami, try to fill in with a veteran,and hope AB and Pau stay injury free.

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  326. http://cbs2.com/sports/lakers.lamar.odom.2.1090930.html

    according to Jim Hill, LO picked up the phone and called dr Buss…

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  327. ESPN reported that “The Miami Heat and Lamar Odom have discussed a deal that would approach the $9 million salary the free-agent forward nearly agreed to last week with the Los Angeles Lakers”

    An average annual salary of $7 Million hardly approaches $9 Million. Even without paying the 9.3% CA income tax for half of his games, which would save an additional $325k per season, it still does not approach what was offered by the Lakers.

    I hope the Jim Hill report is correct and that LO has reached out to put the offer back on the table to re-sign.

    I am tired of reading all of the LO haters; he is a versatile player that was a key member of a championship team and I hope he continues to be for many years.

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  328. is there any truth to cp3 being traded? is this another financial move for NO? that’s the face of the franchise. not unless he wanted to. if this were true, a lot would be taking a look. but i guess not.

    good thing lamar called mr. buss. i think this is a step forward a resolution soon either a new contract with us or a sign and trade. don’t know bout someone walking and doing this if not for respect.

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  329. Good stuff, Darius. I’d never truly understood how trade exceptions were created, but now it makes a lot of sense. Is the value of the exception equal to the amount the team is under the cap?

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  330. Looks like the Celtics have settled on their backup wing – Marquis Daniels.

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  331. 335. I can’t believe people at places like ESPN and KLAC (JT “the brick”) keep saying Miami offered LO $9 million per year when Miami was never in position to make a big FA acquisition because of the cap.

    My gut feeling is LO signs with Lakers for a whole lot of more money than anyone thought he was going to get.

    BTW if talks get that deep between LO and Miami wouldn’t Dr. Buss call Riley to see what he’s planning?

    I don’t think Riley would do something to hurt Miami just to help Dr. Buss or the Lakers but I think he has enough respect for the organization and the man to be upfront with them.

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  332. 332. Kaveh, you are misreading the Forbes Lakers profile. Philip Anschutz, who owns about 30% of the Lakers (and has first right of purchase) is worth nearly $8 billion. In 2005, Buss’ worth was estimated at just shy of $400 million. It is probably higher than that now, although remember: 1) Buss and his family are now in the Lakers business and have almost no other financial interests; 2) Buss does not own all of the Lakers, remember Anschutz (through his AEG) owns a chunk, as does Magic Johnson.

    http://www.forbes.com/lists/2006/32/biz_06nba_Los-Angeles-Lakers_320250.html

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  333. Kurt-

    As much as I love reliving the championship, the autoplay on the video makes it impossible for me to view the site on my iphone. I’m sure other people are having similar problems. Anyways, I miss being able to check the site while I’m at work which is a sign of how great it is. If there is anyway you can fix it or remove the video, I’d be grateful.

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  334. I second the audio/video autoplay removal request. It’s the only thing that I don’t like about this great site.

    I agree with the people who have pointed out that LO’s agent has been stalling while waiting to see if Portland would open up with a bid. I really feel that this was deliberate and hopefully would drive up the price. But Portland (still) doesn’t seem interested.

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  335. Everyone,

    How do you think we match up with all the “superpowers” in the NBA now, either with LO or without? The Spurs got Antonio McDyess and Richard Jefferson (Also, the Bucks waived Fabricio Oberto and may also waive/buyout Bruce Bowen and Kurt Thomas, allowing for a possible return to the Spurs.). The Nuggets finally got a backup to Chancey Billups in Ty Lawson, are a year older, but lost Dahntay Jones to free agency. The Magic got Vince Carter, Brandon Bass, kept Marcin Gortat, and lost Rafer Alston, Courtney Lee, and Tony Battie. The Cavaliers got Shaquille O’Neal and Anthony Parker, but lost Ben Wallace and Sasha Pavlovic. The Celtics, our most hated rivals, got what they needed in Rasheed Wallece and will soon get Marquis Daniels (They lost MIkki Moore and most like Stephon Marbury.). The Lakers signed Ron Artest, lost Trevor Ariza to free agency, and may or may not sign Lamar Odom. Some of these teams may not even be done this offseason. What do you guys think?

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  336. 340 – Riles looks out for Number One.

    He’ll be upfront with Buss if – only if – he feels it’s in his (Riley’s) interests to do so.

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  337. Stuck in alabama July 18, 2009 at 12:04 am

    I was giving the literal translation. I know what it means in regards to economics ..

    Oh and guys the trick on the iPhone is to stop it from fully loading. Hit the x before it’s done, and then once you click on the comments you’re good to let it load all the way. I’m on my iPhone right now.

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  338. Audio/Video fix … right click on picture, and change autoplay setting.

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  339. http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?id=4336149

    “With the Lakers possessing Odom’s Larry Bird rights, Miami can’t match the $9 million annual salary that sources say he and the Lakers agreed to last week before talks collapsed. But the difference between the first three years of a Heat contract — worth nearly $19 million — and the $27 million over three years offered by L.A. might not be as wide as it appears. It’s estimated that the absence of state taxes in Florida would represent close to an extra $1 million per season of take-home pay for Odom.”

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  340. odom called dr. buss this thursday.

    twitter.com/ltvonkcal

    what do you guys think? I think that sooner or later odom and the lakers will agree to a contract.

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  341. so what now? i say offer him 7-8 for 3-4years or a S&T w/miami. be a little ruthless. but then again when your gf says sorry you don’t hold whatever she did over her head or use it to blackmail her. but this is business.

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  342. Looks like Portland is now going after Lee and not LO:
    http://www.nypost.com/seven/07182009/sports/knicks/walsh_lee_ry_of_david_ak_179977.htm

    That probably explains LO’s call to Buss!
    This makes LO’s return to the lakers very likely. 27 million over 3 years should now do it. After 3 years, LO will only be 32 and can most likely still get another contract worth the MLE for 3-4 years. But if he signs an MLE for 5 years now, he will be 34 and will probably have to sign for less than the MLE then.
    I just think that LO’s ego is too big to settle for MLE at this point of his career. He wants to be considered a notch above MLE type of players (ie Ariza, Artest, Gortat,… etc.) and by signing an MLE with the Heat, he will forever downgrade his status/worth. So it would make sense for LO to take a 3 year contract at 9 mil now and sign an MLE in his early 30’s. He knows that If he keeps himself in decent shape, the MLE will still be there barring a major injury.

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  343. Kurt,

    You’re right they were talking about the minority owner at $8billion.

    weak sauce,

    Regarding the other teams I think that if LO returns then we are still heavy favorites to repeat. However, without LO, i think the lakers are at best the 3rd or 4th best team in the league. LO makes that much difference. He is worth the 10m per year.

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  344. kaveh,
    Lamar may be worth it next year, but what will you say in 2-3 years when we have to give up Pau, Koby, or Andrew?

    This is not a one year thing – this is how the club develops over the next 3-4 years.

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  345. What’s next for Odom?
    By Elliott Teaford
    We know two teams are bidding for the services of Lamar Odom, the Lakers and the Miami Heat. What we don’t know, as of this morning, is which team has the best shot at signing Odom. My guess is that he will spend the weekend deciding whether to take the Lakers’ offer of either $30 million over three years or $36 million over four or the Heat’s offer of the full mid-level exception ($34 million or so over five years). There’s no third option as far as I know. Portland isn’t in the picture at present, although the Trail Blazers could jump into the fray after losing out on signing Hedo Turkoglu and Paul Millsap. Dallas apparently isn’t in the mix despite Mavericks owner Mark Cuban’s expressed interest in Odom. So, it’s an either or situation for Odom, who must decide between the Lakers and Heat.

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  346. oh candyman!! he knows we probably dont win w/o him next yr if he leaves, he also knows we repeats if he stays. sign n trade is perfect. if he wants 2 get paid go 4 it,miami only wants em cuz iverson wont sit & utahs jacking up the price on boozer. im not crazy we dont beat houston or denver w/o LO but he’s been MIA for real at times as well. keep it lo key n ask 24 if he’s willing to restucture his deal. so if we give LO his 8-9 mil. & agree to ship em for some laker pieces heres where i go 1.miami (of course) – we basically gave em a ring w/ the shaq trade we need some love in return they get LO & morrison or we get moon or oneal & haslem or beasley any combo you perfer (no chalmers we dont need more guards) 2.new york – we get lee the most athletic big we can get (darius miles,hmm) & hughes they get LO & luke (wont hurt as bad as it seems). 3.chicago – we get hinrich & ty thomas they get LO & farmar. there is life after LO believe it or not just gotta get younger. REPEAT

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  347. Looking at the immediate and near financial future, both of the Lakers and the NBA, I’d be forced to be pessimistic. Looking at this year’s Laker NBA championship, I’d find it difficult not to be optimistic about the immediate future.

    It creates some contradictory expectations in salary negotiations–especially as team salaries rise into the range of luxury tax hell–where busness decisions begin to distort basketball decisions.

    For next year, having Lamar back even at a luxury tax busting level seems reasonable. For each year that follows, the apparent risk rises and the reward goes down.

    Given the realities and proven contract agreements for this year, the value of individual players as free agents has dropped precipitously. Lamar Odom is currently worth no more than the MLE on today’s market for this year–and maybe not even that much. However, to keep him part of the Laker team next year, we might be willing to offer Lamar as much as $10 million for one year–though we would prefer less.

    Now there is year 2, 3, 4, etc. . . . . .

    These are not so clear as the risk goes up and the reward goes down. In the Lakers case, there are structural issues which are not in Lamar’s favor downstream. Under those circumstances, the MLE for five years may be too risky.

    If it were me, I would not offer more than 3 years.

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  348. anonymous

    Kobe and Pau will remain lakers for the rest of their lives. Odom, i don’t care what his contract is, cannot possibly affect this reality. Both are currently at max contracts, and raises won’t be much. Not to mention that Buss can and will pay whatever to keep those two.

    One conversation has nothing to do with the other. Also remember that the lakers have a 3-4 year window and that is it. Without Kobe, it will take time to rebuild. Kobe is the top player in the NBA –no team can stay in championship contention when they lose the best player in the league.

    So of importance is the next 3-4 years —that looks great when you have Odom back, whether for 8 or 10 mil per year. Without Odom or a player of his caliber, a championship is not possible in my book. The lakers do have options even with Odom. But with Odom, it’s just so much easier.

    In my opinion i don’t think Odom wants to be in LA. He wants to be a starter and a major player, like he was this year. As we go forward, his role will shrink to strictly a 6th man. I don’t think Odom wants this. He wants to be 2-3 option.

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  349. amen regarding Pau staying in LA. The $$$ he is generating in Europe now that he is an NBA champ must make him one of the most valuable players to a franchise in the league. He’s worth max money for a long time.

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  350. Who is AMMO?

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  351. Ammo = Adam Morrison

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  352. Just throwing it out their but I don’t think too many fans want to see Odom leave us. BUT would you want to stick around and be the number six? Exactly the guy has almost got his hands tied!

    Ben from the increase my vertical hub.

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  353. The new season is going to be great.

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