Lakers/Pacers: Come From Ahead Loss

Zephid —  January 22, 2012

(Oof, of course the duty of recapping this game would fall to me)

Box Score: Lakers 96, Pacers 98.

The Good
I really wish I could skip this section, but if I had to choose bright spots from this gloomy game, I would have to choose:

Pau Gasol’s passing
Pau made some truly beautiful passes in this game, including an over the head pass that Bynum really should have converted into a dunk, but instead got 2 free throws after a foul. At times too unselfish, Pau deferred to his teammates throughout the game, setting up Barnes for a highlight dunk, and even setting up a lob to Andrew. Throughout the game, the offense ran much more smoothly (note: this is a relative term) when Pau was at the high post, directing traffic, and hitting cutters with pin-point passes. This led to a season-high 10 assists for Pau, and he probably should have had more had his teammates converted some of the bunnies they missed.

Metta World Peace’s Return from the Dead
While MWP was effectively corpse-like against Miami and Orlando, he had a strong game, tallying up 11 points on 5-9 shooting (and even a made three!). While he still made a ton of questionable decisions (those off-balance fade aways are not pretty, nor effective), it was good to see him contribute at least something to the game.

First Quarter Energy
The Lakers did come out firing in the first quarter, taking a 13 point lead, 27-14 going into the 2nd period. Matt Barnes led the way with 6 quick points, leaking out on multiple occasions for some easy points. Pau Gasol and Josh McRoberts also played with great energy, each getting a couple blocks, further fueling the Lakers excellent defensive play (in the 1st quarter).

The Bad
After that first quarter, everything went downhill. While holding the Pacers to 28% shooting in the 1st, the Lakers gave up 65% shooting in the second, with the Pacers shooting lights out from three. This included a David West buzzer-beater, cutting the lead to 3 going in to the half. The Pacers finished 10-18 from three, while the Lakers were an anemic 2-9 from three, which has become a regular thing for this Laker team. Even though the Lakers had a huge free throw advantage (22-33 to 16-19, with four Pacer free throws at the end of the game), they weren’t able to overcome the extra 24 points that the Pacers got from beyond the arc.

Roy Hibbert also had a monstrous game, going 9-13 for 18 points, finishing +18 in 27 minutes. He repeatedly pushed his defender (Bynum, Gasol, Murphy, McRoberts, it didn’t matter) deep into the lane, then finishing solidly with what appears to be his favorite move, a left handed hook shot. Indiana’s trio of young guards, Darren Collison, Paul George, and George Hill, all played solidly, shooting 13-22 combined, and 6-10 from three. The Lakers repeatedly clamped down on penetration on defense, giving up open three after open three, and the Pacers made them pay.

The Ugly
I wish I could put more under this section, but Andrew Bynum deserves special mention. While he didn’t play all that poorly (6-12 shooting for 16 points, 8 boards), he struggled mightily against the double team, making several bad passes and committing turnovers. He also did not contain Hibbert in the slightest, with the Pacers going to Hibbert twice in the last three minutes, each time with Hibbert either getting a shot for himself or a shot for a teammate. For someone vying to be one of the best centers in the league, Andrew needs to be able to contain Hibbert one-on-one, and he just wasn’t able to do that tonight.

Also deserving special mention is how horrible the Lakers last two offensive possessions went. First was a horrible play leading to a terrible Fish shot/pass to Gasol that went out of bounds, then the last was a horrible Kobe three that was contested 30 feet from the basket. Needless to say, the Lakers being down three with only one shot attempt left is a recipe for disaster, because unless Fish is open, Kobe is taking that shot, and he just doesn’t get the separation on the perimeter that he needs to get off a clean shot. A lot of blame should go to Mike Brown for designing an offense with a ton of off-ball movement but very little actual ball movement, but it’s clear that the Lakers have no go-to play down the stretch, not like they used to with the Kobe-Gasol pick and roll.

The Play of the Game
If I had to pick a play, it would have to be Gasol’s high post pass to a cutting Matt Barnes, who dove straight down the lane for a crushing dunk. Sadly, the Lakers went away from Gasol after this play. It is a wonder to watch him pass on the perimeter, and he made a lot of good decisions this game. Hopefully the Lakers will continue this trend, and continue to play their offense through Gasol.

Zephid

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47 responses to Lakers/Pacers: Come From Ahead Loss

  1. That should be the motto if the Mike Brown’ year.

    “Come from behind loss”.

    I am getting it trademarked tomorrow and having hats made up.

    Hats for everyone!

  2. Pau needs to get his offense back, fast. Passing’s nice but he needs to balance it out, Lakers need his scoring too. Honestly though he was a little too unselfish tonight but after the 1st quarter he didn’t get many touches either and missed the ones he did get except the pointless dunk at the end of the game.

  3. Lakers seem to have accepted the fact they aren’t good. There just going thru the motions.

    Call me crazy but I think we’re one GREAT shooter from a title

  4. Kevin

    Jordan?
    Jabber?
    West?
    Baylor?

    Which one?

    We are 11 players from winning a title.

    Smartest man alive. Phil Jackson

  5. It’s been obvious for months now that this team is very, very flawed. A Rolls Royce may have some valuable parts, but without a steering wheel and tires it’s not going to get you anywhere.

    People mocked when in the summer and preseason some on this site pointed out the Lakers’ glaring holes –no PG, no front court depth, no outside shooters, too slow to defend the perimeter. It’s pretty hard to argue now that this is not, at best, a second-tier playoff team in the west, despite having good to very good players like Pau and Kobe and Bynum and Barnes.

    Unlike Ken, I don’t blame Jim Buss. The NBA goes in cycles, and the Lakers have been up for a while of late. Now things are evening out. Buss and Mitch pulled the trigger on a move that would have really balanced out the team’s weaknesses, but David Stern killed the deal. That wasn’t anyone’s fault but the commissioner’s.

    Either way, this season is rapidly nearing the add-an-impact-player-or-blow-it-up moment. The roster as now composed ain’t winning jack, so let’s hope the front office is not content to just tread water for too long.

    And please, Pollyanna Fans, don’t cast this as me “hating” on the team, or some whiny fan’s sense of entitlement. I love the Lakers as much as anyone, but let’s be real: this squad, as a whole, isn’t very good. That happens to every franchise, and I don’t believe it’s unfair, or that we fans are entitled to a winner every season. I just want to see the Lakers moving toward the upswing again, even if that means taking a step backward now to take two steps forward next year or the year after. Now is the time to face tough facts and chart a new course, whatever that may be.

  6. Jordan was the most dominant but I’ll say Kareem. He had a unstoppable shot and longevity plus he is one of the most overlooked athletes in terms of greatest players ppl usually mention 5 people before The Captain and that’s crazy.

    Now I see why PJ vouched so hard for Lamar in 09 his value isn’t truly seen until he’s gone.

    And I agree Mike Brown isn’t utilizing Pau right. He is a true C he has to be on the block with his back to the basket that’s where he’s most effective not PnR with Kobe.

    And Bynum 7 straight games outrebounded. He half-a$$es up the floor sits in the paint. he just has no energy. He has to really step up for us to be a contender

  7. It looks bad…pretty bad.

    Somebody from the bench needs to start some kind of chemestry, not Blake tho. He is not a starter but play heavy minutes like one. But if Mike Brown, or whoever is in charge of the offense, can’t make some plays for those guys, somebody needs to take charge of the bench and start making plays for them. Like, for ex., Morris could talk to Kapono or Murphy, set some plays to get them wide open shots. Those guys are shooting quite well, under pressure, coming out of the bench.

    Somebody needs to take the lead here, as Mike Brown seems to be null as an offense coach.

  8. Question. Does Mike Brown and his excellent defensive coaching realize that the NBA has a 3-point line. Just curious because teams are shooting 50% from there while his players are waving to each other.

    10 place. What’s the all time worst finish for a Laker team?

  9. I always get bummed when the lakers lose but this could really get ugly the way we’re playing I see no sure wins on our schedule. I’m still optomistic at this current team maybe jim buss underestimated how tough a transition this would be after all he did say he thought this team could win it all this year

  10. Lakers worst record in Los Angeles was 30-52 in the 1974-75 season, last in the conference (only time that has happened in Los Angeles) and second worst record overall in the league that year. The New Orleans Jazz finished 23-59. The Lakers in the previous year in the 1973-74 season lost in the conference semi-finals.

    Minneapolis Lakers team in1957-58 finished 19-53, the only time the team finished with the overall worst record in the league.

    Overall, the Lakers have missed the playoffs 4 times in Los Anglels and 5 times in the history of the franchise. And the longest stretch on not appearing in the NBA Finals was 8 years during the 1990s

  11. Pau’s touch pass was cool…SSR guy wrote about that instead of about the game.

  12. Im beginning to enjoy the Lakers whether win or lose

  13. Wondering what Brian Shaw said to Kobe after the game? Last year we only have kobe and lamar as the players who can create a shot for themselves with an offense that doesnt need a true scorer. Now we only have kobe as a shot creator with an offense that REALLY needs a scorer. How I miss PJ and the triangle. Could have hired B. Shaw as the head coach with M. Brown as th defensive coach.

  14. Very glad I didn’t see the second half as I had to go out for most of the evening. It is just very distressing to see this team play to their weaknesses and not to their strengths.

    Bynum’s defense needs to improve quick. I don’t expect DH type defense but he needs to step it up. This guy is going to represent the west in the all-star game.

    Pau still needs to be more agressive but he doesn’t quite have it in him to stay on that.

    I won’t talk about PG play but it is hard to watch.

    In these frustrating times, I can see how people can “whine” about the same things. And it is true that it can be repetitive. But the fact is due to time, coaching, or personnel, the Lakers have done very little to quiet people down on their own. Each game seems to add to the fire.

    The team has more than enough talent to do better than they have so far. I just wish I knew the solution to things.

    Bye.

  15. I only blame David Stern 50% for the trade of CP3. Lakers and Houston did not give NO a good PG in return, they give NO 2 big guys Scola and Odom, Clippers had to give up good guard Eric Gordon to NO for CP3.

    Now remember last season, we want Rick Alderman to be Lakers head coach, but they give the job to Mike Brown, so Jim Buss should know better than me, when you hire a defensive coach, it means you offense is not good. Dr Buss when he hired Phil, he also fixed the problem with the Lakers at that time because Phil’s offense did not need PG, but Phil was also lucky because Ron Harper was available to join and run the offense. To be fair to Mike Brown, he did not have Mo Williams to run the offense like in Cleveland. The important for Lakers organization right now, don’t fall in love with the wrong players, don’t keep the player and say that we like him. A simple example, Lakers pay WP, Luke, Fish, Blake at least 20 mil in total, how many points can they score ?

  16. I must say I would have loved to see Rick Adelman paired with Pau Gasol. Pau would be the perfect high-post forward for Adelman’s offense (and Barnes might be a good slasher for that same offense too). But that was not to be.

    Now this team seems to not be fighting!? Isn’t that what the cast of blue-colar players were supposed to always bring? Blake, Fisher, Barnes, Murphy, McRoberts, Metta are in my eyes valuable for their hustle and workmanlike qualities. If this team is to be successful, they will have to be working like maniacs.

  17. This offense is just depressing… And when things seem to be the worst, you remember you’ll get to see (insert opponent here) shoot lights out from range AND get inside the paint for easy layups.

  18. The Lakers have most of a team that won the NBA championship. As individual players they are very good “pieces”–but not Mike Brown’s pieces.

    Phil cracked his dozen eggs open, carefully warmed the yolks until they became as one–added a few secret ingredients–and produced Sauce Bernaise (and NBA championships).

    Mike Brown assembled this season’s dozen yolks, did much the same in his own way–and produced scrambled eggs.

    The problem is that Sauce Bernaise can easily revert to scrambled eggs if not watched carefully–but scrambled eggs from the beginning are almost impossible to turn into Sauce Bernaise.

    I fear we’ve become scrambled eggs already this season when we need to be Sauce Bernaise to make it into and through the playoffs.

  19. I for one do not miss Phil Jackson and the triangle offense. How good was that offense last year in the playoffs? And Kuester is the one actually orchestrating the offense on this team now so I don’t get all the Mike Brown bashing.

    Bottom line we have a talent issue. No coach or offensive system is going to fix that. Our bigs are overrated in my opinion. How does Kobe outrebound both Pau and Bynum in a game?

    You know you have a talent issue when it’s obvious that we desperately miss Steve Blake.

  20. anti Dwyer Abbott January 23, 2012 at 5:50 am

    It is re-structuring time in Lakerland.Do not fall into high expectations.Try to enjoy the ride along with Pau chucking treys to be Dirk 2nd :)

  21. 18,

    I put it this way, there used to be talents on those tired legs but they’re now old, stale and incompatible with the updated version of new talents. It is like insisting on using Windows 95 in this day and age and stubborn to change or spend to upgrade the memory, the hard drive, the mother board practically almost everything to download videos. The problem encountered is where will you change at middle of the season? I don’t think it is about MBRown & coaches because they’re trying their best. You can’t blame the Superstar he shoots, he assists, he rebounds practically doing everything that is supposed to be spread to four other players. Losing is really the nemesis here, it highlights ineptitude and sense of inadequacy. If only Lakers won by a single point last night, then we all forget the ills or display of hopelessness in our posts. However, there will always be fanatic among us who will embrace anything because of certain personality cult or fanaticism to the brand.

  22. For being just a good rebounding team, look at there rebounding stats for the last four games. We have been out rebounded by 27 boards.

    Indy +7
    Orl +9
    Mia +6
    Dal +5

    Who said, “I ‘ve seen more pushing in the men’s room”.

    So although the effort on offense has been lacking (to say the least) one can say the same about the effort plays.

  23. Ken, before you run out to the printer, you better double check your “motto”… you have “come from behind loss”, go re-read the title of this post, “come from AHEAD loss”… a little twist on the ol’ carpenter saying, “check text twice… print text once”.

  24. The most disturbing situation here is the hiring of coach Brown. He simply doesn’t fit here. I think it is pretty safe to say that the Lakers will NOT go deep into the playoffs (if they make it the playoffs) as long as MB is here. Pau is obviously NOT happy in this “new” system and he is NOT performing to his capabilities. MB wants Pau to change his style of play to fit into his “system”. Well, Pau is not a rookie. It is difficult for him to change (like most older people are). A good coach would design a system that fits the roster’s talent instead of demanding players to change. Let’s hope MB won’t stay very long. I pray to God, that Lakers won’t reshape their team to fit MB’s system, because that would be the ultimate disaster.

    It hurts me to say it, but it is true. The Lakers is a bad team right now. People say they play better defense. No, They Don’t. Good defense means to shut people down at critical points of the game. The Lakers can’t do that.

  25. No matter what offense you’re running, the basket doesn’t move and if the players aren’t moving too then hoisting buzzer beaters as modus operandi is going to continually yield these results.

    Bynum came out with something to prove… for four games. With or without the ball, he was bounding for everything. It’s like “I showed you I could be dominant” now he doesn’t have to prove it anymore. Playing with Kobe you would think that he should understand that he has to bring it every day.

    Pau has playing a little more aware lately in the games I’ve seen. That said, I can’t stand that settling for the outside shot route he’s chosen. Several times he could have made a move to the hole like Barnes did a couple of times (pump fake, go hard).

  26. Or the motto may be “leading from behind.” Seems like we are always down at the half, make a furious charge by the 3rd, then lose it in the 4th.

    Amazing that we have to use our PF to be the de facto half court point guard. I’m sure Pau likes that role (and he’s so skilled that he can pull it off) but it’s strange that we have to pull him off the block. Also, why the heck is Bynum receiving the second pass from the ball handler at the top of the key? By the time he passes the ball off again, there is usually 6-7 seconds on the shot clock, too little time for him to set up in the post.

  27. @25- Hale

    Nail on the head. Bynum has been playing terribly. His stat line has been decent. But, when watching the games, it is obvious that the effort is not there. Hibbert, broken nose and all, worked Andrew last night. That should never happen to a center who wants to be considered the best.
    The other problem with the Lakers offense is that they do not a have a wing player who can make a post entry pass to save their lives. On the few occassions when Bynum establishes himself in the post, the Lakers fail to get the ball to him.

    I have said from the beginning that the Lakers will need until game 30 to figure it all out. But after 18 games, the prognosis is not good.

    This is all very sad.

  28. 24) Andy,
    “The most disturbing situation here is the hiring of coach Brown. He simply doesn’t fit here”

    So far his offensive system isn’t meshing. It’s too soon to tell how much is his fault, how much is due to the lack of practice, and how much is due to lack of effort/ability on the part of the players.

  29. 18) drrayeye,
    Thanks a lot!! I was just frustrated about last night’s game.
    Now I’m frustrated over last night’s game AND I’m hungry.

  30. Since we got a few days off, why not entertain other thoughts to keep our minds off this frustration and angst.

    http://warrenweelim.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=55&action=edit&message=6&postpost=v2

    I beg you differ.

  31. Wow thank you Chris! I was at the trademark office when I read your post.

    Maybe I will just go with

    “My team is bad”

    Are you allowed to trade coaches?

    Brown for B. Scott!

  32. bynum is consistently being punked by everyone he goes up against. his numbers are up, but his impact on any given game is lacking. even eddie curry pushed him around. this is making him less valuable in the eyes of any gm that may want to trade for him, especially with that hefty price tag that comes with him.

    it is going to be hard to rebuild without getting rid of pau/bynum together. since this is now a point guard driven league, it is time for the lakers to trade front court for back court.

  33. #18. Drrayeye,
    It’s simply not true that “The Lakers have most of a team that won the NBA championship.”

    The only players currently on the roster that were on the 2010 title team are Kobe, Gasol, Bynum, Fisher, Artest, and Walton. Of those 6, Walton was a non-factor so even if you want to count him, we can’t really call him a contributor, at least not on the court.

    That’s 5 players and two of them – Fisher and Artest – are in full decline. I’ve long supported Fisher (and still do in a variety of ways) but his contributions in terms of on court production are minimal. This isn’t to say his leadership doesn’t provide value. Nor is it to say he still can’t provide some of “moments” we love so much (the Dallas game is the perfect example of this) but those are no longer the norm from him. Artest, meanwhile, simply can’t find his game on any consistent basis either. Last night he played well. However, 11 games occurred between last night’s game and the last game he scored double figures. In that stretch he had 8 games where he scored either two or zero points. Obviously scoring isn’t everything, but coming into the season we were told that this player would anchor the 2nd unit as an offensive threat. So, uh, yeah.

    My point is, this team, beyond it’s big three, doesn’t have much institutional knowledge in what it takes to win a championship that’s also providing consistent production. So, while I’m not burying this team, I hope we can at least try to speak facts about who’s on the roster and what they’ve done for the Lakers in the past and what they can provide in the future.

  34. Darius,

    All the starters from the Laker team that won the NBA championship remain. Barnes, MacRoberts, Troy Murphy, and Steve Blake have all started on other teams. Kopono is a proven three point shooter. Add the young guys in for spice. The talent is there.

    The Mavs proved last year that one can assemble similar “pieces” into an NBA championship team.

    Phil Jackson did it many times.

    With Brown, this team is still scrambled eggs (maybe with some egg shells left in for grit).

  35. I am an avid reader of this forum as I truly love our Lakers. There was a post yesterday, from Mattal that offered a solution to the Lakers need to reload while avoiding the pain of rebuilding.

    Essentially, the proposition was to tear down the Lakers this year. This would mean trading Gasol for expiring contracts and using the amnesty clause on Kobe this offseason. The savings create enough room for the Lakers to sign both DWill and DH.

    I originally laughed it off as the Lakers, historically, have allowed their greats to retire on their own terms (Baylor, West, Kareem and Magic). After watching the team these last three games I began to wonder if Jim Bush would push the red button and remake the team this off season with DH and DWill.

    This scenario allows Buss to keep Bynum and since the Lakers would be horrible this season they would likely have a lottery pick as well.

    Would the Lakers face the backlash of letting Kobe and Pau go to build a new nucleous around DH, Bynum, DWill and a Lottery Pick?

    Is this crazy??

  36. The CP3 trade would have brought balance to this team. Stern was totally unjustified in nixing the trade. However, Jim Buss did get greedy and broker a deal that not only made the Lakers better but also made the Lakers richer. This was too much for more owners. If we had taken on some salary, we might have been alright.

  37. Would it be too much to ask to get a George Hill-type backup guard? Someone that can shoot AND finish at the basket.
    Name a guard other than Kobe that can break down him man and get to the rim. The last one we had was Farmar.

    Watching Darius Morris try to finish in the paint is PAINFUL.

  38. drrayeye,
    I can see that the new whipping boy is Mike Brown and I can understand that to a certain extent. He’s the head coach and the burden for success will often fall on him.

    That said, it’s disingenuous to say “all the starters from a championship team remain” without acknowleding any decline in their games. It’s the same as people all over the league calling players on their teams “all stars” because they happened to make the game once in their career. It’s semantics, not proof of current ability.

    Also, this roster has holes. Real holes. I’m someone that has gone on record that this team can win as is and even I openly acknowledge the holes on this roster and feel the need to qualify any statement about this team’s chances with comments about how so much would have to go right for the Lakers while things going wrong for their opponents. That’s just the reality of what this team is.

    To say otherwise and just point at Mike Brown without being open about him being a guy that didn’t get a full camp, got players that are in his rotation a week into that compressed camp, is intalling new schemes, and doing it all with literally no practice time, shows an agenda against him. It’s making him the fall guy for issues that are not completely his.

    So, fans can point their finger all they want at Brown. Some of that is surely reasonable. However, do so with an acknowledgment of his circumstances or understand that your comments don’t carry that much weight because they severely lack big picture understanding.

  39. Blaming coaches or crediting them is the toughest thing to do in sports. We don’t know what constitutes a good coach. We don’t know what goes on in practices and behind the scenes. What we do know is this team has historic PG holes and Phil Jackson left this team for a reason. He isn’t in the business of walking away from championship teams. Also… Andrew Bynum needs to be a superstar player for this team to win. He is the only player on the team that is capable of dominating on both sides of the ball like Kobe used to do in his athletic prime. Drew for whatever reason looks like he has been going Shaq the last couple weeks (half assing it).

  40. Drrayeye have you actually watched the Lakers play this year? Heck have you ever watched half the guys you listed as “talented”

    None of the players you listed is a great NBA Talent. Barnes is a “good” talent but he was a NBA journeyman so that doesn’t speak to much as far as his talent (even though I like his game). Troy Murphy? Give me a break the guy couldn’t crack minutes on the Nets last year. Kapono? Seriously? Seriously? When all you can do is shoot in the NBA you will have a hard time finding a roster spot for any team in this league. And don’t get me started on McRoberts, he hustles, is athletic, and can dunk. But other than that he has no great talent in any particular area, he is a marginal talent in the NBA at best. And Steve Blake was great a few years ago (and he’s had some nice games this year) but the guy is aging just like Fisher and Artest, the older players get consistency becomes a real issue. You need to reexamine the rest of the league in terms of what “talent” really is, because the Lakers are devoid of it.

    I don’t blame Mike Brown, I like defensive coaches and that’s how you win Championships, LA didn’t beat Boston in game 7 2 years ago by scoring, they did it on the defensive end. The guy is working with a poorly balanced team. People like to act like Lebron had no talent in Cleveland but the last team Brown coached there was so deep that it was detrimental to his coaching. Lebron was surrounded by shooters at every position, Mo Williams at PG, Anthony Parker at SG, Jamison at PF, and Ilgauskas at C. Yes they weren’t a team that would out muscle you in the post but they had balance at most positions. Add to the fact that they had Shaq, Gibson off the bench (3 point marksman) and an athletic Jamario Moon, and they had a great TEAM. Crunch time they lost because Lebron didn’t show up, everyone remembers how Mo Williams carried them in the first half against Boston in the last game of that series. They beat the crap out of LA on Christmas day because they were a better team that was better constructed. That Cavs team had 3 of the top 5 3 point shooters in the league on that roster. What does LA have this year?

    Seriously recognize and understand talent in the teams of what players are good/bad at and how they can use those abilities to exploit match ups. The Lakers really only have one consistent mismatch and thats #24. Bynum and Pau only show up when they eat their Wheaties for breakfast.

  41. Tony,

    I don’t think you are insane for thinking along those lines. If there is one thing Jim Buss has proven over the last several months is loyalty is not important to him. I don’t mean that as a slight. But look at the people he has let go in his short tenure. I can’t help but think the amnesty card in the Lakers’ back pocket has Kobe’s name written on it. That doesn’t mean they will play it. But if they do it would only make sense to use it on #24. Considering the Lakers payroll it makes little sense to use it on Walton or MWP.

    I do think that is a “nuclear” option. But if the season truly nosedives I wouldn’t rule anything out. With that said I don’t think we are there yet.

  42. I have some suggestion to make on apparent malaise on game-to-game strategies. At first quarter, they were leading 27-14 STOP the tape there….. Analyze what transpired in that quarter why they were successful? Go back to the other games against Bulls, Clippers, Nuggets wherein they were leading big, then suddenly vanishes in the 2nd half too. Pinpoint the problem. STOP the tape again and analyze where were the pitfalls? What were the adjustments made by opponents? And what is the counter adjustment by the Lakers?

    Frankly, I don’t see a lot of plays being re-worked because Lakers are just shooting on the outside and consumed lots of time in executing it. I also observed Kapono/Murphy, Gasol, Fisher are all dependent on Kobe. They don’t initiate their own shots or create space to initiate their own forte’. Give these players the freedom to move, shoot but at a desired distance. Fisher should find his comfort zone in as much as his accuracy is quite inconsistent, Gasol has to penetrate more in the post or within the free throw area and Murphy/Kapono should ask for screen and pop to get a better vision of the hoop. Don’t shoot under pressure, that’s Kobe’s job only. For Bynum, get into the free throw line daily at least 500 FT’s to improve %. Maybe, just maybe this would improve their game compared to previous games.

  43. What is the Lakers identity on offense. And how many plays do we have? The Orlando game we went to the baseline screen 4 Pau on the block 5 times in a row. We didn’t do that once last night. Pau did a great job last night out the high post. I don’t know why Mike Brown didn’t put Ebanks in the 2nd half. I saw some cuts and picks but we had to have run the same plays 25 times last night.

    Where are all the Bynum apologists now? He is the biggest center in the league getting pushed around. good role player not more

  44. Interesting article about the relationship between Shaq&Kobe, Horry said all by Phil.

    http://espn.go.com/blog/truehoop

  45. Dont be so hard on Bynum. He’s just a kid. Give him 10 more years, no injuries, and he will develop into an excellent all-around player.

  46. I don’t think there is any question the Lakers are holding onto the amnesty clause for use on Kobe if things go bad this season and they aren’t able to pull off a blockbuster trade. If they weren’t thinking about that as a possibility they would have already used it on Walton (or possibly MWP although he does have some limited use).

    Kobe is untradeable because of his massive contract and the fact that he would dictate the terms of his trade because of his no-trade clause. Pau still has some trade value and would at the very least bring some young talent, picks and/or expiring contracts in a fire sale situation.