Fast Break Thoughts

Phillip Barnett —  November 10, 2010

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*As most of you noticed, Kurt took this morning’s post and shared some insight on how Forum Blue and Gold was started, how it has grown and a little on what it represents. Today is the website’s sixth birthday and the website couldn’t have been started by a better guy. Even though he has the new gig over at Pro Basketball Talk, he’s still loved around these parts.

*Last night, the Lakers improved to 8-0, tying their second best start in franchise history. Yes, a win is a win, but last night’s was one of the ugliest we’ve seen in recent history. Via e-mail from Darius: “[There were] So many isos and Kobe in gunner mode….ugh.  Seriously, last year all over again.” One of the things about Kobe getting hot in the first half is that he tends to try to carry it over to the second half, and sometimes, it’s to no avail. Last night was a prime example. He closed out the second quarter hitting a few jumpers and an and-one with fewer than two seconds left on the clock. He began the third quarter with a make three pointer and the gunning was on. He would go on to take six more shots in the quarter — none of which were taken within the offense. Of course, the whole offense looked terrible last night, and Kobe’s natural reaction is to try and take over in those kind of situations. However, when the opponent is the Minnesota Timberwolves, you’d like to see this Lakers team try and slow things down, and see what kind of opportunities present themselves, instead of trying to create opportunities that aren’t there. Now that I’ve added my two cents, here are some post-game reactions from around the web:

Land O’ Lakers
Silver Screen and Roll
LA Times
Yahoo! Sports
A Wolf Among Wolves

*It appears that the Lakers weren’t the only team who struggled last night. The Miami Heat blew a 22-point lead, thanks in large part to Paul Millsap — a career 10 percent three point shooter — knocking down three consecutive three pointers and a put pack to tie the game as time expired. It is this Miami team, according to Magic Johnson, that has the Lakers off to an 8-0 start. Via the Los Angeles Times:

“I don’t think the mind-set would have been the same if Miami hadn’t done what it did, because what Miami did sparked everybody,” said Johnson, a Lakers vice president who just sold his share of the team ownership. “It sparked Dr. Buss, because, remember, he was going to cut back but he decided to spend the money, so give him a lot of credit, and then it just trickled all the way down. I think it sparked Phil [Jackson] too, and especially the best player in the world. Kobe [Bryant] has now got everybody else on the same page.”

*On that same note, Dexter Fishmore of Silver Screen and Roll feels like Raja Bell deciding to play for the Utah Jazz instead of playing along side Kobe and Co. has put the Lakers in the position they’re currently in. Clark believes that the Lakers bench with Matt Barnes is a lot better than it would have been with Bell:

“[…] on the 14th, the Jazz dropped an offer on Raja (for three years and about $10 million) considerably larger than anything the Lakers could put on the table. Not unreasonably, he called off the meeting with Kobe and signed his name on Utah’s dotted line. I don’t think at the time any of us were driven to tears by this. I mean, it’s just Raja Bell. On the other hand, none of us then suspected how beautifully the series of events he set in motion would ultimately play out for the purple and gold.”

*Lastly, the HoopDoctors named the Lakers as the team of the week and made this fantastic highlight video of the Lakers season up until the Portland game. Enjoy.

Phillip Barnett

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29 responses to Fast Break Thoughts

  1. So many chances, coincidences and circumstance, but only a true champion capitalizes, not content but ready to contend again and seize the day.

    - after writing this, I have newfound respect for the guy that wrote the huge line in V for Vendetta…

    Anyway, we had a beautiful off season, not quite free of drama but at least only ‘business’ drama. In retrospect, it’s amazing how smoothly we went from plan A to plan B to plan C while nailing ‘musts’ on the way.

  2. It’s karma or kismet…

  3. The inevitable happened, and the twitter post below just made my day :)

    Heat’s Erik Spoelstra said LeBron still feeling effects of shin injury: “Probably will take some time before he’s 100 percent.”

  4. @chearn: those sound like M:TG card names to me, although neither were cards I used often.

    @Arnel: I’m sure LeBron won’t dispute the coach’s assessment that he’s not 100%.

  5. Utah back to back wins against Miami and Orlando on the road. I must say I am impressed, the Jazz tended to struggle on the road in years past.

  6. I hope that Jerry West statue looks like the logo picture. That would be the most appropriate representation. We would be able to look at it even after the NBA changes it’s logo.

  7. Another reason to love Joakim Noah:

    The most recent incident was Friday night in Boston when Noah received a technical foul, and afterward said of Garnett: “He is who he is.”

    “He’s a very mean guy,” Noah said Wednesday. “Where’s the love? None at all. Ugly, too.”

    And he’s only mean to the young guys and the [European players], for some reason. I don’t know why, but that’s who he doesn’t like. He’s not nice. I talk a lot of trash out there, but c’mon, be a little sensitive. Be sweet.”

  8. ROFL @ Noah.

  9. >. We would be able to look at it even after the NBA changes it’s logo.

    hypothetically speaking correctl????!?

  10. evidently the ‘wolves took something out of last night’s game. either that, or Beasley going off for 42/9/2 will get you a W, even if you’re Minnesota.

  11. Happy Birthday FB&G from Philippines! :) Here’s to a 55-point 3rd quarter for LA against Denver. :)

  12. Kobe Kobe Kobe..We would have been 1230-0 in last 15 seasons,if he had not been”gunning” mode.What a naughty boy.

  13. I may be a little late, but this site opened my eyes to the great insights and very reasonable people (though I dont comment much). lol. HBD!

  14. @Craig W.: The statue of Jerry West will almost certainly be something approximating the Logo picture, but I disagree that it would be fitting; he brought us far more championships as a GM than as a player. The most fitting statute would depict him in a suit on the phone–that’s where he was indisputably the most dominant.

  15. Noah is very very cool.

    I wouldn’t have traded him for ‘Melo either.

  16. Oh, and all together now about LeBron’s banged up shin: awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww !!

    Is this a proactive excuse for what the Celtics are likely to do to the Heat tonite?

  17. Alexander,
    Yes, he brought us more championships as a GM, but it is instructive to remember him as one of the greatest players who ever played the game. This is increasingly difficult to communicate to people as time goes on – we all get older and die, for some reason or other.

    Jerry really contributed to making the game of NBA basketball popular and bringing a new area of the country (the West) into the NBA conversation. This really has nothing to do with championships, but today’s youth don’t seem to see anything but championships as being valuable. I am reminded of Dunkirk and an exercise in defeat that was heroic – there are many others in history.

    It is this – almost rule – about forgetting the past that makes me feel the NBA will surely change their logo, and sooner rather than later, and why I think his statue should be similar to the current logo.

  18. Check out this link I got from Probasketballtalk.

    http://nba-point-forward.si.com/2010/11/10/heat-check-boshs-value-is-misunderstood/

    In there is an interesting breakdown on what teams have been doing to adjust for Miami’s great perimeter D.

    Would some of the more triangle savvy posters here care to weigh in on how triangle sets could take advantage of the weaknesses pointed out in the article?

  19. Have the Heat ever lost a game when LeBron’s shins have been completely healthy?

  20. 19 – exhelodrvr – that’s worth looking into …

  21. By the way, the game preview will be up in a little bit. There’s been a bit of a delay…

  22. off topic, but I ran into this site with some pretty cool shirts some of you guys might like.

    http://www.theforestlab.com/store/home.php?cat=1

  23. #19 exhelodrvr, I’d be more interested in his record with a bruised ego.

  24. ex-, no, like the Celtics, they have never lost a game when LeBron, Wade, Bosh were all healthy and Riley was coaching them ;)

  25. 24 – coming right up!

  26. I’m excited for tonight! Let’s get the preview up

  27. LOL @24
    Like Doc, “Our 5 has still never lost a” blah blah blah!!!!!!!

  28. 24, 27 – Reminds me of Shaq’s pronouncement before he won an NBA ring: “I’ve won everywhere except college and the pros”.