Preseason Preview and Chat: The Sacramento Kings

Darius Soriano —  October 25, 2012

The Lakers close their preseason tonight, again facing off against the Kings. The Lakers, still winless in the exhibition season, will try to avoid going 0-8.

I understand that the constant losing has been frustrating for everyone. The fans hate it. The players hate it. I’m sure there’s not a Lakers’ employee that is happy with not winning a single game to this point. That said, I think Pau Gasol said it best after last night’s game, saying “We’d all love to be 7-0 instead of 0-7. Would that make us win more games in regular season? Probably not.”

Like Gasol, I think taking the big-picture view is important here. Not to sound like a broken record but this Lakers’ preseason has been much more about process than results. With three new assistant coaches, a new offense and a roster that turned over by half there’s a need to get on the same page and try to build towards actually becoming a team. Taking some lumps on that path was a given and it’s much more important to clear those hurdles than be the team ahead on the scoreboard at the time the final buzzer sounds.

With that said, dealing with some of the variables associated with “the process” is where my frustration is most directed. In an ideal world, the Lakers would really only be dealing with Howard’s injury and subsequent absence from the lineup. They’d then have been able to work together sans (only) their starting center (which wouldn’t be ideal, but would have been expected) and start that growth process.

Instead, Jordan Hill has only played in two of the Lakers’ seven games. Kobe’s missed two games already and will miss his third tonight. Pau Gasol sat out a game. Those absences were not planned for and have affected the team in a myriad of ways. Most notably, the team has not been able to even scratch the surface on what a potential rotation would look like. Neither have they been able to examine nearly as many lineup combinations in game situations to be able to evaluate which groupings work and which ones don’t. There’s a domino effect to having key players out and the Lakers have had to deal with that more than anyone expected, much less wanted.

There are ways in which the preseason doesn’t matter and there are ways where you can’t dismiss things so easily. The Lakers not being able to get the floor time together, in game situations, counts as the latter. I’m not overly concerned about this, but I’m also not thrilled with it. The team will have time during the regular season to sort out issues. But by the very nature of that premise, the team will be going into the regular season a bit off schedule.

Even if you were a person that thought it would take time to find that chemistry (and I’m raising my hand here), we must acknowledge that the process — at least in game situations — has been pushed back somewhat. If you want to vent, vent on that.

————-

As for tonight’s game, there’s really only one goal. The players need to walk out of the game as healthy as they walked in. Kobe is already sitting out tonight and there’s now a question as to whether he’ll play in the season opener. Jordan Hill isn’t yet 100% and he’s a pretty important bench player. Steve Nash suffered a tweak to his ankle (that looked pretty bad) and no one wants a repeat of anything close to resembling that again. This team doesn’t need anymore question marks in terms of health between now and next Tuesday.

I don’t care about winning. I don’t care about 0-8. As far as I’m concerned, I’d love it if this team had a historical footnote of winning it all in June after not winning a single game in the preseason. If anything it would finally kill the concept that preseason mattered in any way.

Lastly, it may not seem like a huge deal but there is a battle to see what’s going to happen at the bottom of the Lakers’ roster. They currently have 13 guaranteed contracts on the team, leaving Andrew Goudelock, Robert Sacre, and Darius Johnson-Odom as the guys trying to make a big enough impression to be kept on the roster. At most two can make the team. For my money, I’ve got Sacre already on the team. He’s been a pleasant surprise and has proven he can add value to this roster. As for Goudelock and DJO, I don’t see either making the final cut. Neither has stood out and history has taught us the Lakers usually like to have an open roster spot should they want to add a player once the season begins (either via a trade where they trade one for two, or by signing a FA outright).

So, I leave you all with a reminder of the reality that tonight is the last game where the results don’t really matter. And in that respect, enjoy it. The pressure and expectation of performance will change dramatically starting next tuesday.

Darius Soriano

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65 responses to Preseason Preview and Chat: The Sacramento Kings

  1. As you say, preparation is much more important at this point.

    The main effect of winning would be that Laker fans might not have to read another round of game articles whose leads focus on the preseason losing streak.

    So, poor us! Unlike many other fans we can hope to still be reading Lakers stories in the playoffs and finals.

  2. Jim C.,

    A response to some points you brought up last thread. Ebanks did not have a 3pt shot and that was likely a reason that he was pulled from the starting role at SF. Part of it also had to do with Matt Barnes success at the position (maybe in practice?) and Peace working himself back into game shape.

    You mentioned that Brown didn’t play Hill until the end of the season. Hill came to the Lakers having sustained an injury (ankle?) in his first or second practice. He wasn’t available to play until the last week of the season, which explains his absence from the rotations beforehand.

  3. It would be nice to win a game and not turn the ball over 20 times again.

  4. Been trying to stay away from here until the season starts so I wouldnt have that losing preseason mojo carried along till it really counts. My only concern is when will this offense click, and will it click once all the guns are loaded. This intricate offense has caused the boys to look horrible the majority of the time, with a few rays of sunshine. My question would be, why would an offense with an obvious high level of difficulty getting accilimated too be implemented in the first place?

    Ron has caught on quite well , his days with Adelman and good health seems to be paying off, everybody else seems to be thinking too much, MIke Brown included. When in reality the transition should be a little easier, if this team based its offense around individual matchups.

    LA has four hall of famers or future hall of famers who are use to getting double and tripled team on a regular basis in the past. As currently constructed that is impossible for an opposing team to do while all are on the floor at the same time or even with just two. Thats what has made Miami great the last two years and they only have two hall of famers and one allstar. Their offense was basic the last two years and it still got them to the Finals both years. They didnt need to come up with some elaborate scheme to counter teams, because talent wins ball games, and in that case LA has plenty of it that is murders row when left in a one on one situation against any team. The only thing this team should be dealing with now is Steve, Bean, and Dwight getting use to taking a backseat on some nights.

    This Princeton nonsense has to stop immediately, leave that to the Ivy Leaguers, or this year will be wasted on trying to outsmart your ownself. Its not rocket science, its just basketball. Whoever puts the ball in the hoop more wins, its that simple.

  5. The pre-season losing streak ends tonight. Of course the W will only bring the haters out in force. “Look how much better we moved the ball” “So many more people were involved” Etc Etc. Then, tomorrow we can talk about how the primary problem is someone’s ego and me first attitude. It will be like it is 2001 all over again – which isn’t a bad thing : )

  6. Am I the only one concerned about Kobe’s injury? The dude has been a rock his whole career, but now his just breaking down before our very eyes.

    Two ankle injuries in the preseason is very alarming. And the fact he may not play in the opener may mean the injury is more serious than what we think.

    And given that this is Kobe who never misses games, i’m starting to freak out a little.

  7. Well said Don. Brown has been over thing since his days in Cleveland. So much so that the Cavs rebelled. Let the smart player run Mike and stop trying to do something you are not. A basketball guru.

  8. I have been unaffected by all the losses as I haven’t been able to watch any of them (save last night’s) being a San Diego DirecTV subscriber…

  9. Get Swing Box. Attached it to someone with Time Warner and get it on your computer live

  10. This preseason has been tough…. to read the comments section of this blog. Hope it becomes a little bit more balanced and objective when the season starts.

    Darius, great write up per usual. I hope that Kobe’s foot injury isn’t too bad, but it would be interesting to see how the offense develops.

    Have fun everyone. I’m sure people will find something wrong with Mike Brown tonight, because you know, he’s terrible (apparently).

  11. I’m really not overly concerned about the Lakers loss record in preseason. Too many variables are involved in those losses: new players, new offense, injuries, older players, uncertainty about the bench, Coach Brown, the Princeton offense. More concerned with the team playing hard and not assuming that the superstar starting five will win games on paper and not on the floor.

    The more the Lakers stay within the Princeton offense the more comfortable they will become in it. When the season starts expect Nash and Kobe to do whatever is necessary to win the game…and it will not be sticking to the Princeton offense, unless they have 100% confidence that the offense will win games.

    An offense is useful in games because a player knows where and when the shot will be taken. This allows them to get in position for offensive rebounds or to rotate back to balance the floor on defense. The Princeton offense is beautiful when ran right, with strong cuts and backdoors for open shots and layups.

    The Lakers are going to be 1-7 after the game tonight. Go Lakers!

  12. Nash PnR, Pau post ups and Dwight post ups. Please.

  13. What’s the point in Devin Ebanks being on the floor if he’s running at the same pace as the older Lakers? The Lakers run down the floor and stop at the 3 pt line, no cutting through the lane to probe for an easy bucket. They stay perimeter until they rotely start running the offense. Run the floor hard Devin and cut through to the opposite 3pt line and let Metta switch to the opposite side, then start running the offense. The more movement there is the more the floor opens up for Nash and DHo and Pau to score and if the defense collapses in on them they can now kick the ball out for a wide open shot or slash to the basket.

  14. They have no idea what they are doing On offense. Thanks Mike.

  15. This is embarrassing again. Unwatchable. Terrible defense and offense.

  16. bench makes a run. people dont know who to praise. cant be mike brown. cant be the awful bench. heads explode

  17. Radius – Amen. Well said.

  18. I think we should just bite the bullet on defense some to help the bench’s offense. I’m not sure what can be exploited with a Hill-Sacre tandem when there’s not a scoring guard on the court with them. The court looks clustered with the current bench unit. Also like to see Brown call plays for the bench they could use.

  19. No motives or bias whatsoever. Do the Lakers have the players to have a good bench or are they not being used properly or is it too soon to tell?

  20. Another 20 plus turnover game coming. Great.

  21. I understand their offense not being consistent, but where is the vaunted defense that Mike Brown supposedly espouses?

  22. radius

    I believe Mike Brown could be a good coach if he would just relax and stop trying to reinvent the wheel. Great coaches in any sport tailor their offense around the players they have, not the other way around. He is currrently cutting the doors off of a brand new Maybach, you get what Im saying.

  23. Wouldn’t mind getting a look @ Goudelock and/or DJO in this final period of the Pre-season.

  24. The most glaring indictment on Mike Brown as a coach is that during this 0-8 game losing streak the Lakers are unable to sustain not one positive aspect of any of the games and build off of it. That’s not a good sign. Something is unmistakably wrong with his coaching style.

    If Brown smiles one time during his post game interview I am going to smash a twinkie!

  25. I appreciate a Simers column at times this preseason should make for a good one.

    Tra: Likelyhood of that happening is slim. Brown’s ability to adjust in game is poor.

  26. Hardly riveting entertainment … Looks like any prediction of a slow start to the season was an understatement.

  27. I want to see more variability with the Steve Nash pnr. He can only run it one way out of the Princeton currently. Set up some different positioning for him and see what happens.

  28. Body language of this team either says they Dislike the offense or the coach. Or both. Hope The Buss family has Time Warner. In Cleveland James just started ignoring Brown and ran his own offense.

    How long will it take Kobe and Nash to do the same?

  29. #23 I’m guessing both Goudelock and djo are getting cut so neither of them will see minutes.

    During the 3rd i thought we turned into Orlando on offense with all of the 3s being shot amd Howard not getting the ball :(

    Ebanks and hill are having solid games and are playing with heart

    I though the Princeton would be more like the triangle but all of what I’ll call the triple movement a the top of the key every possession to swing the ball from side to side is essentially 10-12 seconds that are wasted each possession before we get into an offensive action and really attack the defense

    In the limited minutes I’ve been able to see him play Duhon has played better than Blake in both setting up the offense and guarding his man on d while also getting into passig lanes as well as little thing like bringing the ball up the court.

    I think one of the bigger things our bench needs is just freedom. The bench mob 08 was pretty free to change styles and bring up the pace – if farmar is available we should maybe look him up not sure if he is playing in isreal or not- an this bench now and last year seemed super committed to going through Their sets with no one really tryig to break down their man like LO and farmar would, even Sasha at times would be assertive offensively – now Jamison is way to passive we need him to lead the group an not be just a cog

  30. @Ko-How long will it take Kobe and Nash to do the same?

    Less time!

    Something is off kilter with this team on offense and defense. The Lakers have not played with any sense of urgency this season. There are too many players on this team that do not have a spot, yet they all act as though they’re assured a paycheck. It’s unbelievable how lethargic this team plays the game.

    Can’t wait until the start of the season. Let’s hope the Lakers do some shooting drills.

  31. 0-8 that’s a preseason record in consecutive losses, the results are diametrically opposite to the 71-72 Lakers that set consecutive victories in NBA.

    Where is the Lakers excellence in this team?

  32. Can’t wait for the start if the season and a coaching change! Mr. Excuse must go.

  33. Delonte west is being cut by the mavericks for Internal issues – i knownthe guy might be a headcase but he played under brown,is active on D, assertive and can shoot the 3.

    Also they picked up cdr amd curry to battle it out for a spot

  34. Shaun – I found myself thinking the same thing about West. Issues for sure, but his skills (attack off the dribble, solid D) are what the bench seems to need an injection of.

    I don’t see it happening though.

  35. Glad that meaningless preseason is finally over with. Still…

    0-8: worst in the league.
    Point differential -15.3: worst in the league by far (2nd worst is CHA at -7.0)
    Points scored per game 85.9: 2nd worst in the league (we’re better than NO)
    Points given up per game 101.1: 4th worst in the league (we’re better than ORL, HOU, and Brooklyn)
    # of preseason home games 7: most in the league.

    What does it mean? In the final standings, nothing, thank goodness. But if nothing else, it means the lineups that are being put out there are not performing well, on offense or on defense.

    There are several reasons why this could be, including new offense, new defense, injured players, and resting of starters. But every team is dealing with this to some extent, so at some point you have to wonder why we’re performing so poorly relative to the rest of the league. Even if it is preseason.

    In any case, it’s over with, and I can’t wait for the season to begin. Go Lakers!

  36. I’m so glad that the preseason is over. Mainly because the people who kept saying, “it’s only preseason, wait til the regular season starts”, will finally shut up about it. Because the real season is upon us. So what is everyone going to say if we lose on opening night? Wait until game 2? And if we lose that game? Wait til game 3? I swear, it’s always one excuse after another. Even as a lifelong Lakers fan, I can honestly say that I can’t think of another team in all of sports who’s fans pull out more excuses from their *sses than ours. It’s always, “new coach, new players, new this, new that”. Yeah, as if wer’e the only team that has to deal with things like this.

    Well the time for excuses is over. Can the team get their act together come Tuesday? I certainly hope so…

  37. Lakers frontcourt is second to none. They have all the making to impose their will on teams in the paint once Dwight gets his timing down. Sacre will add more depth and spell a few minutes he’s a good player. Meeks and Blake spot up shooting are good signs and Ebanks improved jumper and confidence should bring consistent play out of him.

  38. Zirk,
    And I can’t think of a fanbase that consistently ignores context, expects a championship to be won in October and then whines about it when it doesn’t happen more than the Lakers’.

    There’s obviously a middle ground. But fans that solely express there aren’t things to improve on vs. fans that think the team should be perfect from day one are the same fans but on different sides of the same coin.

  39. Kevin,

    C’mon, saying Sacre is a good player….? Seven footer yes, grit & bruiser yes – that’s it. The other qualities or demerits leaves a lot to be desired. He should be assigned in D’League or play in the Euro League to get tune with the basketball moves. You can’t mix him with Nash, Kobe, Peace and Dwight, he will spoil the front court success.

  40. Lakers perimeter players are slow and are getting taken off the dribble at will. They’ve picked up where they left off in forcing turnovers and transition defense. (Maybe they should take a page out of Boston’s book and get good shots and get back on defense). Lots of lazy passes and half effort don’t know if they’re tired of that’s what their being taught but that has to change. And the lack of players with skill is glaring on the bench. There’s zero versatility on our bench. Sacre has been the most consistent player there.

    Brown has to pick it up the “it’s only preseason” talk flew with Phil here. I don’t feel as confident when Brown is saying it.

  41. Edwin: we’re watching different games Sacre’s been a constant when he plays. Good post d, hooks, jumpers and grit. Sacre’s making the team and that’s a good thing we’ll need him.

  42. I was opposed to the “journey” and “needing time to gel” rhetoric last year; the team just didn’t have the talent. This year, we do need to give it time. I want to see 20-25 games before I start making judgments.

    That said, the three basic things to worry about…

    Age/health
    depth
    Brown

    …all at this point appear, to be, in fact, things to worry about.

    Preseason is just preseason, but it is still basketball. Given that Nowitzki is out and Dallas has its weakest roster in many years, a win on Tuesday would be nice.

  43. Darius’ point for context: Your big name acquisition from the Summer (that top 5 player in the league Center who holds the paint on both sides of the paint) played 2 games. Best player on the team + Big name acquisition have played a total of 1 (one) game together. Top 8 rotation players have played a total 1 game (or was Hill out the game Dwight returned?; maybe 0 games). New offensive system installed.

    These aren’t excuses Zirk. They are fact. Basketball isn’t won easily, if it were, every freakin team in this league would have as many banners on the rafters. The Lakers will have to take time to build it, and the hope is that they will be in sync by the time christmas break/All star break come around.

    If you want to be concerned about something there are plenty of things to deal with. 1. Is Kobe ok? How is his foot? 2. Dwight’s back. (Looks good so far). 3. Is Jamison still a scorer that he was last year? 4. Is Steve Nash being utilized correctly (don’t know, too early too tell). 5. How will the rotations work once the team is back healthy (if it ever is, if not, what will the rotations look like. 6. Princeton offense works, proven in this league. How will this team gel.

    Those are the discussions that should (and used to be had) here on this site. Actual discussion about basketball. Rather than minute to minute conclusions about how bad people are, or how inept they are. Because I still feel that people who are in those positions (such as Coach Brown) have worked their butt off to get there and know more than us.

  44. A total of 66 shots again?Way to go on that elusive run.Something is clearly wrong with this team.Life after Kobe will be harsh.

  45. Heard a funny comment on Laker talk.

    Princeton offense was created for teams with little talent to play better. Little talent is not the Laker problem.

    Odd that a guy from San Diego State(hardly Harvard West) would try to teach that offense!

    Kinda funny.

  46. shout-out to vegas for doing the homework on the numbers

    Overall it is pretty obvious that we are getting drastically outplayed all pre-season and I think as fans we are within our right to be concerned and if I was part of the FO wouldnt you be too

    The concern that we are all seeing is that other teams have so much depth this year – nuggets, clippers, celtics, heat, spurs, maybe OKC with PJones – are all deeper than us with some teams going 10+ deep

    Overall on the expected roster of 14 we have 7-8 guys that can play being ebanks, hill and maybe jamison from the bench. If we have to deal with an injury in-season what we have seen in the preseason will be our actual team so to be concerned with the effort/outcome of these games is not totally out there since there is a chance they may need to play like this.

    If you are spending 100 Mil+ on this team plus who knows what next year what is another 4-5 million to sign 1-2 guys that can actually benefit the bench

    At this time I know that the group can grow together but coaching is still a concern. I am hoping that mitch will be able to pull off some vodoo magic at the end of the trading deadline again and get us another quality bench player for the playoff run but in looking at some teams that should be out of the hunt even then the boy-out market will be slim this year.

    Side note – Im super excited to watch the boston/miami opening game – the drama there is gonna be huge – the most recent news is that boston in addition to offering allen double the money also offered him a no trade clause which completely negates all those who thought the celtics disrespected ray – I could only imagine the hate that the fans and even his former teammates will have for him.

  47. Darius,
    I completely agree. There should be a middle ground. While there’s no reason for any of us to have a “the sky is falling” attitude at this point in time, I’m also not one to have a “ho hum, we lost again, no big deal” attitude either, whether it’s preseason or the Finals.

    Now does it necessarily matter if we would’ve have went 8-0 in the preseason instead of 0-8? Of course not. But just because it’s preseaon doesn’t excuse the completely piss poor play where the players at times looked like it was the first time any of them had touched a basketball. Ever!

    With the new players and new offense, should we expect the team to be a well oiled machine at this point in the season? Of course not. But with a full training camp and 8 games played, I think we should be seeing constant improvement (yes, I know we have injuries). And that’s what concerns me the most. I keep seeing the same stupid mistakes being made, and certain players don’t seem to be improving at all.

    So that’s what I mean about excuses. I don’t agree with making excuses for not improving just because it’s preseason. And I certainly don’t think we should be so cavalier about flipping the switch come Tuesday just because that game means something. Do I hope that happens? Of course. Do I think our mistakes are fixable? Yes. But make no mistake, at this time, there are some real concerns about this team.

  48. Radius,
    I agree with you as well. All I’m saying is that the concerns you brought up, and other real issues, shouldn’t be brushed off so easily just because these 8 games didn’t count. Fans shouldn’t expect them to disappear on Tuesday just because that game matters.

  49. 46. “Princeton offense was created for teams with little talent to play better. Little talent is not the Laker problem.”

    Do you know easy I can replace Princeton with Triangle?

  50. Wonder what Jerry Sloan is doing these days?

  51. @radius 10:10
    Wonderful “framing” post for how fb and g might approach games to come.

  52. Zirk,

    Pau, 29 minutes
    Nash, 15 minutes
    Howard, 23 minutes
    Peace, 22 minutes
    Kobe, 0 minutes

    Is it surprising that teams that aren’t top heavy are having success against us? CLEARLY their 2nd teams are better than ours. The warriors and jazz both have better benches than us. So if we’re playing 6-10 half the game, of course we’re going to lose. That’s not how our team is constructed. CONTEXT.

    The Lakers are learning a new offense, and it’s very clear that the coaching staff is trying to force the issue in the preseason, running their sets persistently regardless of the outcome. This might explain why many players are out of sorts on offense, because they are still learning a new and complicated system. I wouldn’t be surprised if at the start of the season they ran much less Princeton and slowly integrated it over the next 82 games. CONTEXT.

    Only one team wins the championship every year, and everything usually needs to work out perfectly for that team to accomplish the feat. If Bosh remained injured for one more week last season, it’s likely that the Heat would have been bounced prior to the finals. If the Thunder lose one of their three superstars in Westbrook, Durant, or Harden to injury, it’s very likely their team would not last the Western Conference. So your statement about injuries applies to EVERY top-heavy team. Of course if Howard or Kobe is injured, we’re not going to be world beaters. We won’t win the championship. CONTEXT.

    Now some people are freaking because Kobe is taking precautions with injuries, a smart thing to do at his age. “He’s falling apart before our eyes”. This sentiment I don’t understand at all. He’s missed two preseason games and they’ve released no information about the extent of the injuries. What information do you have that we don’t? I want the Lakers healthy come June, not December. CONTEXT.

    People need to chill and remember that ball’s a game. People are venting hatred over a game, not even a game that counts. Preseason. The level of frustration over a string of preseason losses is frustrating. I could almost see Ken going Rambo, knife between his teeth, full camo sneaking into Coach Brown’s home and slitting his throat in the dark of night. Either that or a coronary.

  53. This was a great preseason. Dwight Howard isn’t Larry Johnson after back surgery and looked even more mobile in game two than he did in game one. It seems in two more months he will be back to 100 percent and Aaron will be wrong. All that mattered this preseason was Howard’s health. He needs to be our best player and the second best player in the NBA for us to win a championship.

  54. Did you guys watched Miami Heat on 2011?

    Fans commenting on this site and complaining about coaching staff, players and offense already felt what Miami fans felt the day LBJ,Bosh and Wade played together.

    Rome was not built for one day. Even Miami Heat never really started winning in the early chapter of the season.

  55. I’m inclined to take the point of view that we should not panic. That is mainly because of the quality of our players. They will figure out how to win. They will run a different offense if need be. They will fake an occasional injury to give themselves the rest their coach is not giving them. They will find the heart themselves even when their head has none. The floor general and the captain will run the show if need be. But let’s be serious here. Can anybody honestly say that Mike Brown is a good coach?

  56. rr,

    No need to panic even with inept preseason performance against non-playoff contenders in the previous season. They too, were using rookies and applicants in their games, yet Lakers could not keep up a decent quarter. I also admire the All Star acquisition of this summer and for this, we are forever grateful for Mitch & Jim’s efforts in trying to inject talent even for on short term basis only.

    However, there has to be a plan, a back-up plan by the management before they launching their $ 120 million investment including luxury taxes. If the P.O. do not work in the first 10 games what is the fall back? If Lakers go beyond .500 mark in the first 20 games, what is the fall back? The Buss Family should protect their investments not only with their faithful fans, their investors and co-owners, but also the loyalty of their All Stars who are here with one objective – “Win A Championship. We are all in a borrowed time, every quarter affects the whole game and every game counts from hereon. No more excuses please, all NBA teams have their own upside and downside. This is not Cleveland where fans have patience to wither storms of ineptness. Lakers has to win games, that’s our mojo and that’s why we are blogging on this site.

  57. 41,

    Kevin, I do agree that Sacre should make the roster but I vehemently disagree when you said he is constant when playing the post d, jumper and all sorts. Can’t even hold the ball for 5 seconds without turning it over? Can’t stop Lee or Landry, can’t slow down Aldridge, can’t play at par with De Andre Jordan and Hollins, can’t guard Millsap or Jefferson? Last night, can’t box out Thompson/Cousins. Who can he stop? Well, we haven’t faced the best teams yet. I maybe harsh with my observation but from what I’ve seen in those 8 games, I see Mihm and Sean Rooks in that seven foot body. We ever mindful to be kind on rookies but this dude start with loud mouth and bragging rights to proclaim that he should be called “bruiser or upon being chosen in the 60th pick in the draft that he’s joining the Lakers to give Kobe his 6th ring”. Wow ambition and confidence is good if you can back it up with solid performance. As a newbie, it is best to be humble and observant since he is just a filler, a rookie and with great probability a bench warmer for his 1st season.

  58. I believe the main lakers problem is Coach Mike Brown. He is the wrong person to coach an organization like the lakers. I’ve never seen a head coach so clueless during timeouts like Mike Brown. Majority of the time during timeouts, he either stays outside the hurdle looking in while his assistants do the drawups on the white board. And when he stays in the huddle, the look on his face says CONFUSED, and once again an assistant does the talking.
    Another problem going into this season is the new princeton offense that requires constant movement; asking a bunch of old guys to keep moving is a huge problem. I know the offseason doesn’t determine anything but at least it shows a glimpse of the problems. Nash looks like he’s tied down in this offense and judging by the scores so far, this princeton offense is not living up to anything.
    Most players on the bench are not finding their rhythm especially jamison who is supposed to be the 6th man.
    Finally I can’t close without mentoning Gasol. Pau could go down as the biggest decline in productivity of any player that was once an allstar. It just feels like hehe’s not showing any effort especially on defense. At this point, he’s PATHETIC. I hope that changes but I doubt it. We’ve al waited for the old pau from the back to back championship year to return for the past 3 years now.

    GO LAKERS! !

  59. I really like it when Aaron refers to Aaron in the third person.

  60. The wait and see approach will be tough if Lakers start off 3-7. It’s a given the starters will be dominant eventually that’s no reason to worry. What is is that out of 8 games Lakers were competitive in about 10 QUARTERS. For more than half the preseason Lakers were absolutely overwhelmed by teams. This is a team that had an offseason, training camp and 8 preseason games and the product is very poor.

    Let’s remember Kobe saved Brown and co. with his hot start last year when Brown told him to “shoot the ball” while they gradually pick up the offense. We shouldn’t expect or want Kobe to score 25 ppg again this year. My biggest worry is what it’s always been scoring points.

  61. Kevin,

    I think that once Howard, Nash, Kobe, and Pau get comfortable with each other at NBA game speed, they will start putting up points in bunches. At the very least, we’ll be in a similar position as last year–our bench losing leads built by the starters. I think we’ll see a lot of what works early in the season until they learn the Princeton adequately and it starts working. There is plenty of cause for patience, especially with how funky the rotations have been.

  62. Kareem: Lakers starters will be fine their talent alone will carry them even if the Princeton offense continues to sputter. They won’t be able to score every point though the bench needs to step up.

  63. The Los Angeles Lakers.

    Will be fine gentlemen.