Friday Forum

Dave Murphy —  July 20, 2012

Heading into a summer weekend, there doesn’t seem to be much new on the Lakers front, although the recent Antawn Jamison pickup is a nice move for the money. The long running process of a potential Dwight Howard trade, has certainly allowed for plenty of columns to be written and filed. To be honest though, it doesn’t feel as if there’s anything really different or concrete to report. If a transaction does indeed come to fruition, it will be handled outside of media channels, apart from the seemingly endless supply of unnamed sources. This isn’t a slam on people who contribute timely hints and details. It’s only an acknowledgment that Mitch Kupchak does his business quietly, and carefully. If he indeed pulls the trigger on a deal, we’ll all hear about it. On a different, but no less intriguing level, Adam Morrison had a terrific game last night, playing against the Lakers in summer league action. Morrison’s been lighting it up with the Clippers and while they didn’t win last night, he kept them right in the game. Prior to Las Vegas, he played for the Brooklyn Nets in the Orlando Pro summer league. I’ve always been a fan, have always wanted the guy to succeed. I hope he makes it back to an NBA career.

Ben Rosales at Silver Screen and Roll, offers a recap for the Lakers summer league, with impressions and predictions.

Dave McMenamin from ESPN Los Angeles, also looks at the Lakers summer squad, with some great anecdotes about Chuck Person and his staff.

Andy Kamenetzky at the Land O’Lakers, considers the upcoming training camp under Mike Brown.

Mark Medina at the LA Times, reports that Vegas oddsmakers are split on whether Dwight Howard would help the Lakers win a championship.

Ramneet Singh at Lakers Nation, writes about Jerry West and Shaquille O’Neal.

Scott Schroeder contributed this piece for SB Nation, about Adam Morrison’s summer league quest.

Vince Marottta at Arizona Sports, reports that Shannon Brown has re-signed with the Suns.

Our old pal Vlad Rad has signed a one-year deal with the Chicago Bulls. So says Aggrey Sam at CSN.

Eric Freeman at Ball Don’t Lie writes about Doug Collins and his onetime rookie center Kwame Brown, who he envisions as a starter with the 76ers.

Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don’t Lie offers an interesting article about Dennis Rodman meeting his father, after 42 years.

This article’s a few days old and has nothing to do with the Lakers. I liked it though, and wanted to share – James Herbert at Hardwood Paroxysm, on Damian Lillard’s birthday.


As I’ve been compiling these links, a slow-moving process that has stretched from late morning to afternoon, I’ve returned time and again to twitter and other places of breaking news – ready to include any tangible evidence that might point to a new piece of business from the Lakers front office. There’s nothing at the moment to report, although that certainly could change over the weekend. We’ll be sure to keep an ear out and report back, and readers please do the same. Enjoy the weekend everybody.

– Dave Murphy

Dave Murphy


to Friday Forum

  1. So for the backup 2 spot – what about Michael redd? If we are getting jamison and O’Neal we might as well go for another former star looking for a ring – and supposedly he looked like he was back in shape last year no?


  2. Redd never really found his shot last year… He shot .318 from deep and had a weak eFG% of .458. I would think the Lakers could do better.

    What about Marco Belinelli? He’s kind of a knucklehead but he can flat out shoot. .393 career shooter from 3, shot a solid .377 last year. Also, it’s time to ink Jordan Hill. He’s an ideal fit for this team.

    I’d much rather go with the younger Belinelli and Hill, who still have some years of their prime left, rather than the aging Jermaine O’Neal and Redd.


  3. I guess that’s why I’m a Vegas guy…

    “Vegas probably does not value Howard as highly as the public does,” Bell said. “Vegas values Bynum slightly higher than the public does.”


  4. hmm, bring back Adam Morrison might be a good idea :).


  5. @Toli – I wouldn’t be totally surprised to see him across the hall in a Clippers uniform this season.


  6. Aaron,

    You got to be worried with your guy because the roller coaster is on the up swing again with a little adjustment from Mr. Fegan.

    According to FoxSportsWest, the agent said:

    “Dwight would definitely play for the Lakers, but he has to be traded there first. He has no problem with the Lakers at all, and in fact is waiting for the trade to happen. The roadblock is that the (Magic) GM (Rob Hennigan) still thinks he can talk Howard into staying and signing a new contract. That’s not going to happen. Dwight might not sign an extension right away with the Lakers, either, but I’m sure that down the road he will.”

    ~~Knowing the Lakers magnetism the phrase down the road is enough to move the mountain to Mohammed and the “ka-ching” after signing will flow freely in Howard’s coffers in so many ways. That is the given word as of today.


  7. Belinelli is a SG, i.e., Kobe’s backup. He’d be a good addition.

    Problem here is that we’re waiting for the BIG domino piece to fall. Then everything will follow. But we should have a deadline for this piece to fall. Hill, Belinelli, Landry, etc…Many teams will find a spot for those guys and we must not fall behind, as a good bench is KEY for a championship. I’d say monday, or maybe mid-week, to drop of the race.

    Amo? Not sure. He did well on SL but there was very little D on him most of the time Playing for the Lakers will be much more difficult to hit his shots, once he will face heavy D. Although, I like him as a person a lot; I hope he finds a spot somewhere.


  8. Re: Michael Redd – he started off slow for the Suns last year as he was obviously working out the rust, but seemed to get his legs towards the end of the year and was really effective during the Sun’s playoff drive. There were even times where he reminded you of the old Milwaukee Bucks version…


  9. The NY Laker continues to be in pain and agony out on the east coast with all the Dwight Howard talks.

    All eyes should be kept on the ball. Jamison pickup is huge and will surely bolster the bench. More help for the bench is clearly and easily the top priority.

    The NY Laker is most excited about getting Dwight Howard because perhaps LA could pick up Hedo or JRich with the deal. Again, more guys off the bench who make shots.

    Solidify the bench…..we march to the Finals!


  10. Adrian Wojnarowski ?@WojYahooNBA

    Jordan Hill has reached agreement on a two-year, nearly $8 million deal with the Lakers, his agent Kevin Bradbury tells Y! Sports.


  11. Jordan Hill is back….So for now top 8 is Bynum, Gasol, MWP, Kobe, Nash, Jamison, Hill, Blake

    I’d really like to see us sign another shooter like Randy Foye and perhaps add some more perimeter athleticism either via acquisition or improvement (Ebanks).


  12. JHill is back! What a relief…

    We’re a Brandon Rush away from having a real contender for the next season. Don’t get me wrong; I’m not saying we look bad as is, but those little pieces are very important in order to contend.

    Great move by the FO? Hm, yes of course…but I’m wondering if the dominos pieces started to fall…


  13. Great to get get J Hill back. Now all we need is one more shooter regardless of whether we get Howard or not. I would love to get Brandon Rush but that probably would require a sign and trade because he is restricted. Next best would be Jodie Meeks who we can probably get with the Mini.


  14. Isn’t the max the lakers can offer to Jordan Hill 3.6m/year?
    How did he get 2 years 8m?


  15. Brandon Rush would be great. I just don’t know how he can be acquired given his RFA status and the Lakers lack of tradable assets. Golden State would have to secretly harbor interest in Josh McRoberts and a million dollar throw-in player for the numbers to match in a 1:1 trade.

    Good for Shannon to get another 2 years. Phoenix has made some good pick ups thus far.


  16. @14 – good question…

    I was told that there’s something called “partial bird rights” (whatever that means)

    Eric Pincus: “Lakers can’t near $8 mil via MLE to pay Jordan Hill over 2 – they have mini MLE – this is through partial Bird Rights – more than mini MLE”


  17. Brandon Rush or Jodie Meeks.

    Mitch, bring one of them and you’re done (besides the DH drama)


  18. Iblike Hill. We are going to be fine with or without DH12.

    So I don’t care what happens now. I’m a happy camper.


  19. Kenny, I assume that his salary goes up next year. Most contracts have raises every year (whatever the new CBA allows).


  20. With J.Hill back on board, and Jamison playing the stretch 4, don’t see the need to sign J.O’Neal. Hill can play the back up 5 or basically Gasol or Bynum (whoever gets to play with the 2nd unit). Now, last piece should be a big guard who can defend quick 2nd unit combo guards and more of a slasher/creator since it will be Blake, Jamison, Ebanks, Hill in the 2nd unit. Havent seen enough of Meeks but I think he’s more of a shooter than a scorer/creator just like Rush. Randy Foye will be a better fit IMO but I don’t like his shooting percentage and his shot selection. though Rush would be the perfect 2/3 combo player for the Laker squad to play behind either Kobe and MWP


  21. Thank you Jimbo and Mitch, our own FA was finally signed. Good addition to the new Lakers bench mob. I think it would go this way

    1 Blake
    2 Ebanks
    3 Jamison or Peace
    4 Hill
    5 Gasol

    ~~ That would qualify for a starting line up with other teams. Rush or Meeks would be a privilege to complete the arsenal.

    PS. Our condolence and prayers to those whose lives have been affected by mass shooting in Aurora.


  22. Jordan Hill and Antawn Jamison had better offers but chose the Lakers for a shot at a championship. You have to love those guys.

    We didn’t need you anyway Grant Hill. Go rot on the JV squad.

    4 man frontcourt rotation. Lakers just need a SG and SF now.


  23. Glad about the Hill signing, I like what he brings to the squad and it would have been annoying to lose him. This team needs a few guys who have young motors to fill out the rotation, and I don’t think the FO could have found a comparable player given price and cap considerations.

    And also, it means the Derek Fisher trade is going to continue to reap dividends for the next couple of seasons, instead of being a half-season’s worth of salary and personnel dump.


  24. Glad to see Hill is finally signed. That’s a really solid group of bigs, with or without Howard.


    I haven’t watched much of Jamison lately but it would surprise me if he can still play the 3. We need a legit backup wing (Rush would be a dream) to complete that unit.


  25. yay hill.


  26. I think Michael Redd and Josh Howard are available. I hope Mitch is considering their services, and making calls.


  27. 22,

    Kevin, yeah I think they could smell something from the Lakers that was not present before. Hill added that he was excited to join Nash for the Championship. Boy! that was a delayed reaction from July 4th to this date. As a free agent, he was not really free to speak what is in his mind two weeks ago, muted by the 10% Agent and 2 year money contract in the horizon.

    Whether it’s Howard or Bynum on 5 I also believe Lakers could go all the way. I have only one reservation and I think many Laker fans share this sentiment. I do not have any confidence with our head coach! He’s not the Championship breed but just Coach of the Year type.


  28. Lakers have come a long way from possibly blowing the team up to adding pieces at great value without trading anyone.

    Lakers spent $27 mill plus tax penalties for 3 years for Nash. And J. Hill plus tax. To think I thought they were going to all of a sudden become penny pinchers. They are absolutely going for it and I love it and won’t care in 3 years if we’re rebuilding.


  29. “…not the Championship breed but just Coach of the Year type.”

    Now what is that supposed to be? His team did get to the finals one year.

    At the very least, we should give our coach a year to strut his stuff. He didn’t exactly get a real cushy start last year – following Phil, strike, LO trade, etc.

    The coach a lot of us wanted is now in Minny, but he too hasn’t won any championships. Perhaps, just perhaps, it is awfully tough to win a championship – regardless of our pedigree.

    I will hold you to your statement in 3yrs, when we kind of suck.


  30. dave m: with an ice cold beer in hand, thank god for friday forum. so what we got so far? an active front office, fans talking about recent acquisitions and the likes of you keeping laker nation tuned into the causal effects of the spiritual interactions between the two entities.

    speaking of spiritual, by sunday it is my hope that we will be reflecting on another acquisition/trade laker front office will have boldly made so as to keep the faithful following addiction to this thing we call love for the game of basketball. It just so happens that we have an ownership that is extremely addicted to the game turned business and a business that is simply a game. a fascinating dilemma we all so are connected. dave, continue to keep the addiction alive.

    Go Lakers !


  31. @28 Kevin – Not a problem with spending more than you can, my wife does it all the time…

    @27 Edwin – We don’t need MB anymore, Nash will run the thing.


  32. 3 moves have upgraded this team to a top 6 team to a top 3 team. Find a point guard to play 20 minutes and can shoot and we have a real shot.


  33. CraigW: Fair. I just want 17 while Kobe’s still playing.

    MagicPhil: your not the only one to go through that. Once I realized the spending potential definitely bailed on the joint account.


  34. From the Los Angeles Times via br: “Jerry West Recalls Struggle to Acquire Shaquille”

    Still, West expressed appreciation for Buss’ giving him full support. “You cannot win without players,” West said. “I don’t care if it’s Phil Jackson, Pat Riley, Red Auerbach, whoever. If you don’t have players, you’re not going to win. You might be better organized. You might be very competitive. But you’re not going to win. It just doesn’t happen that way. So you’re always trying to attract the very best talent for Los Angeles.”

    Players win championships with an assist from the coach, and not coaches win championships with an assist from players.

    I miss Jerry West and his angst.

    Welcome back Jordan Hill.


  35. Great pickup to resign Hill. I expect to see either McRoberts or Pau get traded -possibly McRoberts thrown in a Howard trade or Pau for a SF/SG.


  36. A lot of guys are assuming that Blake is the back up point guard but Morris might surprise us all. After a rocky start to summer league play, he steadily improved. By the end, he was ripping it up. At 6′ 5″ 217 ponds he was abusing smaller guards in the paint and still facilitating. He could be a huge surprise at training camp this year.


  37. @davidh – thank you for the kind words! Signing Hill is a great way to start the weekend. Once Ebanks and Jamison ink their contracts, we’ll have a roster of 12, plus the two rooks, Johnson & Sacre. We’re very close to having a full, deep team. And I don’t think we’re quite done yet.


  38. Excellent news on the Jordan Hill re-signing. Gives us BADLY needed youth, energy and frontcourt depth.

    I think we can all breath a sigh of relief having at least four rotation quality big-men on the roster for next year regardless of what happens with the Bynum/Howard situation.


  39. 29,

    I hope I’m wrong with my assessment, whatever happens I will always cheer for the Lakers. I hope he’ll managed well the minutes for nash and kobe. No more excuses on Lakers loss nor have the answer why they lost but could not apply that formula on the hard court. Don’t tell it the media the reasons why? but show the effects or adjustments made in the next game. We got a Coach not a PR guy. IMO, he was more interested in motivating press people than his players.


  40. I mentioned in an earlier post that this whole Bynum/Howard thing was preventing other dominos to fall. With the announcement of the J Hill signing it seems that we may be sending a clear message to Orlando that we are not waiting on them to figure out which end is up. Really a little comical how they are executing the deer in the headlights school of management.

    Kudos to Mitch, Jim B, et al on bringing a successful conclusion to the Hill free agency. He will be key to our aspirations this season. As far as Dwight & Orlando are concerned…well I’d be happy to see Howard join the P&G but we ain’t waiting and the number of dance partners are dwindling.

    Just the thought of Nash, Jamison and a re-inked Hill is so much more palatable than the Kapono, McRoberts, Murphy additions last year. Huge upgrade.


  41. Edwin @ 39…I think you were reiterating your concerns about Mike Brown but it’s a little hard to tell.


  42. You have to imagine that the Lakers are very unwilling to do any major trades in-season this year. Last year was a mess due to the new coach, short season, no training camp combination.

    This might be the last year with Kobe in the top of tops, don’t think the Bynum-Howard swap will take place after start of training camp.


  43. Can I just say I’m starting to like that Jim Buss guy. He got of to a rocky start early on, but lately, he’s moves have been pretty damn good.

    He got Nash and Jamison for peanuts. He resigned Jordan Hill and now, he’s playing the waiting game w/ Orlando to perfection. (last I recalled, last year it was Pau+Bynum to get Howard).

    Now we get to keep Pau and have Howard too. Dayum! The dude is pretty good considering the guy he was replacing was considered the best owner in sports.