Preview and Chat: The Los Angeles Clippers

Zephid —  January 4, 2013

Records: Lakers 15-16 (11th in the West), Clippers 25-8 (2nd in the West)
Offensive Ratings: Lakers 106.4 (6th in the NBA), Clippers 106.9 (5th in the NBA)
Defensive Ratings: Lakers 102.7 (18th in the NBA), Clippers 97.8 (3rd in the NBA)
Projected Starting Lineups:
Lakers: Steve Nash, Darius Morris, Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Dwight Howard
Clippers: Chris Paul, Willie Green, Caron Butler, Blake Griffin, DeAndre Jordan
Injuries:
Lakers: Steve Blake (out), Chris Duhon (game-time decision)
Clippers: Grant Hill (out), Chauncey Billups (out)

The Lakers Coming in: The Lakers are now 3-2 since the return of Steve Nash, with three quality wins against Golden State (comeback), New York (top 10 team), and Portland (blowout), an understandable loss on the 2nd night of a back-to-back on the road in Denver (classically one of the hardest back-to-backs to make), and a head-scratching loss to a 76ers team still without the former Laker, Andrew Bynum, as their anchor.  There’s a lot of talk about the Lakers being old, lacking energy, and needing to play through it, but when your team shoots 3-22 from the three point line and misses 11 free throws in a four point game, it’s tough to blame anything except a lack of shot-making.  Still, despite some minor setbacks, the Lakers have looked like a much improved team with Steve Nash and Pau Gasol back in the fold.  Howard is clearly still not 100%, but then again, he wasn’t supposed to play until now when we first traded for him in the summer.

Against the Clippers, the Lakers will need everyone to have a good game.  Pau and Dwight cannot shoot a combined 3-19 if the Lakers want even a chance to win this game, and the defense cannot give up the type of easy scores that plagued them against the 76ers and numerous other opponents.  The Clippers are a young, athletic team, and like most teams these days, will try to beat the Lakers in transition, even after a made basket.  It will be paramount that the Lakers maintain defensive balance, and that the bigs hustle back to defend the paint.

The Clippers Coming in: The Clippers, recent owners of a 17 game win-streak, have now lost their last two games by a combined 35 points.  However, over that stretch they only faced one team that was more than 2 games over .500, and that was the Chicago Bulls.  All the while, it’s still impressive that they managed 17 straight wins over NBA-level competition, and the Lakers would be more than happy to go on a streak half that length right now.

Despite the fact that the Clippers are generally known for their flashy, highlight-reel offense run by Chris Paul, it is really their defense that is propelling them to success.  They are currently 3rd in defensive efficiency, no doubt bolstered by the heavy on-ball pressure of Chris Paul and Eric Bledsoe.  Both are in the top 20 in the league in steals per game, with Paul leading the league with a crazy 2.67 steals per game. While Griffin and Jordan are not the best defensive bigs in the league (understatement), their speed and athleticism allows them to hedge hard and recover quickly, pairing well with a ball-hawking perimeter defense.

The true strength of the Clippers, in my mind, is truly their depth.  According to 82games.com, the 2nd most played Clipper 5-man unit is a lineup of Bledsoe-Crawford-Barnes-Odom-Turiaf, a 5-man bench unit which is a killer defensive squad.  From this excellent article by Kevin Arnovitz talking Clippers defense, the second unit is one of the big reasons why the Clippers have improved so much on defense.  On offense, leading that unit with 16.5 ppg is Jamal Crawford, arguably the leading candidate for Sixth Man of the Year.  Shutting down Crawford is the key to stopping the Clippers bench attack.  If Crawford is allowed to break his man down 1 on 1, it will lead to open shots for Barnes (which he is hitting this year), as well as interior passing lanes for Bledsoe, Odom, and Turiaf.

Keys to the game: The Clippers are a fairly average rebounding team, so the Lakers may be able to take advantage of that on the offensive and defensive boards.  However, offensive rebounding opportunities need to be done so with floor balance, because the Clippers will be looking to get out and beat the Lakers down court for an easy score.  Like I said, a lot of things needs to break their way for the Lakers to win this game.  Kobe claims that the Clippers are championship contenders, and they very much look the part.  However, if the Lakers hit their shots and play defense at their maximum capacity, they can hang with anyone.

Where you can watch: 7:30pm PST start on TWC Sportsnet and nationally on ESPN.

Update: As is being reported by multiple sources, MWP will start at SF tonight.  This should shift the Lakers back to their ideal starting 5 of Nash, Bryant, MWP, Gasol, and Howard.

-Zephid

Follow me on Twitter @ZephidFB_G

Zephid

Posts

219 responses to Preview and Chat: The Los Angeles Clippers

  1. for Warren!!!!

  2. Breaking News, Rudy Gay is avalible for trade.

  3. @Form – i think wed you mentioned Amare’s remarks regarding MDA teaching defense – I’ve followed AMare since he got drafted and he’s never tried to play D and isn’t the smartest player so. And then i thought about how he threw a lot of guys under the bus – including his current coach Mike Woodson – who was the DEFENSIVE COACH under MDA in NY so I had my eyebrow raised at the remarks. Anyways – here’s MDA’s response today – have to say, at the very least MDA is a witty and honest with his replies lol.

    via espn: http://espn.go.com/los-angeles/nba/story/_/id/8813733/mike-dantoni-confounded-amare-stoudemire-assertion-taught-defense

    Stoudemire told reporters Wednesday that “just having a defensive coach for the first time in my career is going to help.

    “I’ve never been taught defense in my whole career, so to now have a coach that actually teaches defense and teaches strategies, and knows positioning and posture, how to guard different plays, it’s going to be helpful. I’m going to take it as a challenge, and I’m going to accept the challenge and try to improve as a player.”

    Added D’Antoni on Friday: “I mean, come on. He just threw Frank Johnson, myself, Alvin Gentry and actually Mike Woodson [under the bus]. Was [Woodson] saving the good stuff? Because he coached him eight months and he was the defensive coach. So it was like, ‘You know, I won’t tell him that, I’ll save that until I really coach him.’ It doesn’t make any sense.

    “Anyway, a lot of times players will say things just to say things. I have a good relationship with him. He’s a good guy and I hope him the best. You know, if he’s learning, great. He needs it. That would be super.”

    “It just boggles the mind,” D’Antoni said, shaking his head. “It just boggles the mind.”

  4. Im so disheartened by this team lack of effort, we can hit the panic button all we like but the botton line is that we lost because Pau and Howard shoot 3 of whatever for the field, and especially Howard missing from point blank range at least 5 times that was the game in a nutshel how in the hell you go 3-19 combined against Spencer Hawes and Kwame#€£¥%% Brownl i guess our bigs had a very good new years eve that wasnt a game that philly won, the Lakers lost , the rest of the team did ok. Lets see what they bring tonight but im not expecting a lot.

  5. I think the key statistic will be turnovers. Clippers rank #1 in forcing turnovers while Lakers are at towards the bottom in commiting them (though they’ve been improving lately), and of course turnovers directly expose the Lakers’ weaknesses in transitional defense and lack of athleticism.

    The Lakers have a chance if they take care of the ball, otherwise they’ll get blown out.

  6. @form – i posted the above article in response, musta forgot to enter my name when my comp reset.

    At the very least it should be an entertaining game. Need to just take it one game at a time.

  7. When playing the Clippers you can’t let up. They can explode for points. They are like OKC in that regard. You can be close (or even have a small lead) for most the game. And then they explode midway through the 4th and a narrow lead turns into a 20 point loss.

    If the Lakers are going to win tonight they will have to play all 48 minutes with purpose and focus. Any short dry spell can lead to the Clippers blowing this game open and never looking back. They have that kind of team. Crawford can turn a game around all by himself.

    I’d love to see a little more of what we saw in the Knicks game. A slower pace at certain junctures to take away their momentum. And some Howard/Nash PNR’s late in the game to keep the defense on its heals. I’m hopeful. We’ll see what happens.

  8. Here´s to starting another winning streak TONIGHT!
    Give `em hell Lakers!!

  9. Kobe Alert: At tip-off, KB will tie Alex English for 29th on the games list. He also moved to within 50 FG’s of English for 8th there. KB is now within 1000 points of Wilt. Steve Nash is moving in on 10k dimes (I am putting Nash in the Kobe Alert, because these guys need to learn how to better compliment each other).

  10. I believe the lakers will come out and play a good game tonight. They need to start believing in themselves as a team and knock the clippers out. Show some heart and pride – if they play hard they will win or at least it will be a close game. If they give up then they aren’t worth rooting for. Most fans can be patient but we don’t like to see a lack of effort and heart.

    Cmon Lakers!!!

  11. Metta is back in starting lineup at the 3, D’Antoni saying he may use jamison as well – sounds like he wants to make sure they come out strong offensively – especially since they’re getting such inconsistent games from Pau/Howard

  12. look how many ex-Lakers are on the Clippers, 3 out of 5 bench players, LO, Barmes, Ronnie, Caron in the starting 5 (and I guess you could even count Paul for a couple minutes )

  13. Clippers should win this game by out last 10 tonight. I will be happy if the Lakers can at least be competitive the whole game and make it close. Clippers are the better team though and should win this game.

  14. A positive for the Lakers is that the scouts for the Clippers don’t know which Lakers team will play tonight.

    Let’s go Lakers!

  15. Hopefully, we won’t suffer another ‘Home’ loss tonight.

  16. Right now Howard and Pau are taking all our shots and missing and turning the ball over on the offensive end. On the defensive end, except for the Paul bucket where Kobe got lost, it is the Clips bigs burning ours.

  17. Howard looking pretty good tonight, so far.

  18. I am LOVING the defense by MWP so far! That last sequence against griffin was ridiculous

  19. Good start. Dwight playing hard. No shot for Kobe? Like starting Metta and AJ gets a shot. All good.

  20. Didn’t see that coming. Antawn playing. LOL

  21. Lets get this win Lakers!!!

  22. Gasol is getting winded chasing Blake Griffin

  23. Gasol is getting winded chasing his shadow…

  24. Looking forward to the trash talk tonight between Kobe and Barnes.

  25. WOW Kobe with the steal and the SLAM DUNK.

  26. Meeks needs to either knock down those shots or we need to start sitting him. I love his effort but those are WIDE open corner 3′s.

  27. Meeks has to hit those shots

  28. Meeks not helping, Metta please. He was working hard. Confused?

  29. I don’t understand how a “shooter” can miss so many WIDE open 3′s. Once again, our shooting is killing us tonight because the effort and energy are actually there. But yet we’re still losing.

  30. Come on Meeks, seriously, that was a lay-up.

    Honestly, these are just ridiculous mental errors that add up over the course of games to cost us wins. It has been happening all year. Every night it seems like we have a least one key guy that is wandering around in some sort of fog.

  31. It all comes down to making shots folks. Our role-players better damn well hit an open 3 every once in a while or this will be a blow out.

  32. And that is why Kobe needs to take over so much. Because guys can’t hit open shots consistently on this team. Both Ron and Meeks are very inconsistent from 3 and can’t be relied upon to hit those shots. Nash however, needs to become more involved in the offense.

  33. In order to have any hopes to achieve something this season we have to forget Meeks ang get at least 1 or better 2 3pts specialists. D’antoni offense is useless without pure shooters in the rotation.

  34. Gasol………..FOR 3!

  35. It’s like a inter squad game out there. 4 ex-Lakers,

  36. Clippers have the all Laker line up in: Barnes, Odom, Turiaf, Butler, Paul

  37. Pau can’t even guard a fat*ss Lamar. Unbelievable.

  38. Gasol is just useless….why or why did we not trade him for Josh Smith when we had the chance??!!!! Hawks of course DO NOT want that trade anymore.

    Dude has become a major defensive liability and has fallen in love with a 3 point shot that he sucks at.

    Enough already.

  39. Haha I was going to post the same thing: All current and former Lakers versus each other (even if one of them was a Laker for about an hour).

  40. Defence isn’t bad up top – nash and kobe are doing their jobs, but the posts have to get their heads out of their asses. Hate the fact that howard needs to be force fed so much at the start just to get him motivated to play d. That took the lakers so much out of their offence and it just devolved into throw the ball into dwight and stand around.

    Defence is alright – but Lakers have to start scoring and stop defering to dwight in the post etc… Hopefully now that he has some point Nash/kobe will start looking for their own now.

  41. Joe, I think Pau has been “encouraged” to take threes by the Laker’s “genius” coach. You know, the one with a system that doesn’t match his personnel.

  42. Dwight has zero offensive moves. That is not a back thing.

    As for Pau?

    Sad to watch.

  43. The lakers are sad. They look confused and uncomfortable. Pau is useless. If its because of injury then he needs to sit. But he doesn’t defend and is very passive and ineffective on the offensive end. There hasn’t been an ounch of improvement in Pau’s game since Nash has come back.

  44. This game is all about talent. The Clips have it, we don’t. It’s that easy.

    Kobe needs to come back in and just start jacking up shots because none of the players on our team are capable of making a damn thing!

  45. If the Lakers have any hope to start winning games against top tier teams, Nash is going to have to get selfish and start looking to score 20+ a game. His shooting % is 59, Pau’s is 41.

  46. This team is so sad to watch.

  47. What a 30 point half? Get Meeks out of there. This team is just sad.

  48. Howard is just playing lazy on D, that push has become a defensive move by him, he is lucky they don’t call him for it more often.

  49. The lakers lack of depth is being exposed right now.

  50. Talent?

    Effort?

    Coaching?

    Front office?

    What the heck is it?

  51. On a happy note, I would like to point out that since we’re this horrible, we will now decide to trade Gasol and cut payroll.

  52. Nash is unimpressive with his passive play.

    The Lakers are not an offensive team nor a defensive team. Not impressed with D’Antoni either.

  53. Trade him for who Warren?

    Kwame Brown

  54. On the offensive end

    Dwight is limited
    Pau doesn’t do enough and is confused
    Metta does way too much
    Kobe is forced to do everything
    Nash isn’t aggressive

  55. I don’t post much, but this is down right embarrassing..did I expect a W tonight against one of the leagues best? No….did I expect a blow out by 2nd quarter? Not so much…this is saddening.

  56. We might as well have Smush in there for Nash. Seriously. I understand wanting to get other players involved, but for one of the best shooters to ever play to be so passive and not have taken a SINGLE shot so far is head scratching. Especially on a night where nobody else can make a freakin shot!

  57. Good luck with trading Gasol – you know a team that wants to take on his 2 years/38 million dollar contract currently? If we gave him away no one would take him because they won’t want to pay him next year when the punitive luxury tax kicks in.

    Lakers had their chance to trade him this summer – Houston, Minnesota and the Hawks all came around and we rebuffed them thinking, wrongly, that Gasol will return to form one day.

    Now that Gasol is playing this badly, no one is coming around, can you blame them?

  58. I really really like Jordan Hill.

  59. Lakers are getting hammered and Crawford hasn’t even gone off yet.

  60. Boy is Dwight a bad offensive player.

  61. Seriously, what is MDA doing, why would you sit Hill and bring back Pau?

  62. Nash and kobe need to play the rest of the night if they are to have a chance. Enough trying to appease Howard by feeding him constantly. Someone needs to tell him to shut up and just play d – trying to constantly feed him neglects pau and f’s everything up.

  63. crawford isnt playing tonight – hurt foot i believe

  64. Back breaking defensive let down there by Howard.

  65. It’s amazing what happens when we do something so simple as make shots.

  66. Is anyone else convinced the Lakers won’t get over the hump this game?

  67. @ Jerke – totally missed that, was wondering why he hadn’t scored yet. Makes sense, only way this team could stop him is if he wasn’t playing!!!

  68. All they need to do is REBOUND and play DEFENSE.

    I don’t care if they don’t score much.

  69. Joe

    Who the heck knows what MD is doing.

    Perhaps we should ask Knick fans.

  70. Nash shoots, he scores. Go figure.

  71. please do something with Gasol!!!

  72. Griffin just made Gasol his B*TCH

  73. @joe lol – yeah, might be in for a world of hurt if he was. Sigh Pau – not MDA’s fault Pau just cannot guard 4′s at all.

  74. 2 pouters 1 complainer= bad transition defense

    2 guards 2sf with no latteral movement= bad halfcourt defense

    1 bad coach = 3 point shooting center

  75. Pau is doing absolutely nothing out there right now, he is a pylon on D (when he is in the area, as he gets beat down the floor regularly) and is an absolute ghost on offence. I would play Earl Clark at this point.

  76. I really really really like Jordan Hill.

  77. Jordan Hill needs to play the majority of our minutes at the 4 if we are going to win any games against any team that doesn’t just have an off night.

  78. Maybe it should’ve been Gasol we traded for a TPE?

  79. Good d from Nash so far – Nash and kobe just have to take over next half. they’re the only ones who know what the hell they’re doing tonight and hit the shots they’re supposed to hit.

  80. Forget trading Pau. Just cut him. Addition by subtraction.

  81. 2 pouters 1 complainer= bad transition defense
    2 guards 2sf with no latteral movement= bad halfcourt defense

    1 bad coach = 3 point shooting center

  82. Still, good D from Kobe, just a great make by Paul.

    We are dying on defence with Pau out there, he simply cannot play any significant minutes at this point.

  83. Lots of younger teams can use that kind of leader and post scorer. On the old Lakers he just looks the oldest.

    Referring to Pau.

  84. Seriously just trade Gasol. He doesn’t fit Mike D’antoni’s offense and hes injured and old anyway.

  85. Kobe has no fundamentals on D. Saves his energy for offense.

  86. Feels so bad for Nash. Came to chase a ring and ended up chasing for a playoff spot. He needs a team with no superstar ego and bullcrap.

  87. LOL at Paul’s comment at the half. “We were talking about our kids. Yeah, right.”

    Clippers may be just too much, but if the Lakers had brought this energy against the Sixers, they would have won that game.

  88. nope. He needs a team with better players.

  89. . Guys in the studio are just ripping MD

  90. Pau 2 points 3 rb in 17 min

    Hill 13 points 5 rb in 12 minutes.

    Who do you think will get most of the minutes 2nd half?

    Guy on ESPN just said “I have no idea what Mike D is doing”

    Magic says “It’s stupid basketball”

    They are just blasting tbe coach. Embarrassing to this franchise.

  91. Hey rr – did not know you were here. I have thought about your infamous statement several times tonight

  92. At least one person with the Lakers gets a ring this year…Jeanie Buss.

  93. Here at the game and the talent level is so far on the side of the clippers. And pau looks BAD. Mitch usually sits where i’m sitting and the view isn’t pretty. This is the kind of game that gets phones ringing. And nfl playoffs start tommorrow could see some personnel changes if lakers aren’t competitive in 2nd hald.

  94. @mike Bill Simmons hates the lakers i thought that was common knowledge.

  95. Joe: Not so fast – I heard Jim is trying to get her to interview other candidates

  96. Once again, our Defense is atrocious. As it was in the Philly game, we just can’t get stops. Hill has been our best performer so far in this game. Fortunate to only be down by 10 at the half.

  97. Magic johnson is an idiot. So what is MDA supposed to do with Howard on offense? howard can’t handle the friggin ball close to the hoop, never mind 15-20 feet away. Plus this whole franchise is stuck trying to convince Howard he’s the next big thing here when he’s not playing like it. Even when MDA has played Pau downlow Pau has shown zero effort or reason to feed him – refuses to post up or hustle down the flr when he’s the 5 and has shown no will to be assertive at all down low.

    i will give magic this though – Pau up high does make it easier for Griffin run outs – but if you play howard higher to allow Pau room, the same thing would happen anywas or they would just double down on pau since howard is zero threat outside of 5 ft from the hoop.

  98. @Robert: too funny…and potentially true…

  99. Is Jalen Rose the most awkward studio host of all time? He’s not bad as an analyst by ESPN’s standards (although I don’t care for him much), but as a host he’s constantly flubbing lead-ins, mixing his lead-outs with voiceovers, and speaks in coherent sentences only 60% of the time.

  100. Robert,

    Given how Paul’s, Pau’s, and Lamar’s career arcs have gone since the veto and where the Clippers and the Lakers are, well, yes.

    The problem is still defense. 61 points on 54.3% FG for the Clippers without Crawford.

  101. BTW I used to hate Bill Simmons and then I read his book and started to really listen to him. That guy actually knows a TON about basketball. He hates the Lakers by requirement (he is a born and bred Celtics fan), but he doesn’t really hate, hate them. Kobe has converted him into a fan.

    He really hates Kareem though, like on a personal level.

    He was bang on during the half time show, the Lakers are a terrible defensive team with bad coaching. This though is all a product of bad management who failed to put together a good defensive team and hired the wrong coach…twice.

  102. @kevin – i think you’re right. if this is a double digit loss tonight, i don’t think mitch waits for the 15th, i think he starts looking and lining up deals now. this isn’t about a roster that fits MDA’s system – its about a deficient roster outside of Nash, kobe, metta – everyone else is either injured too weak in some area (offense or defense) to really help this team out. otherwise they need to decalre this season a wash and move on.

  103. That is a clear path foul!

  104. @joe – simmons book is good, i will give him that.

    Pau gets a post up – fails to be assertive, rools away behind the basket -misses then complains to ref. yeesh. yes Magic – lets post up Pau every time.

  105. Great start so far.

  106. Nice start to the 3rd qtr for once! Can we sustain it?

    Nash should be taking at least 15 shots a game.

  107. Dr. Flop (aka Chris Paul) draws another one…I see that system of fines has really helped things.

  108. Joe

    Nailed it.

    Boy would I live to shut these Clippers up!

  109. Joe, too funny. Robert nice comeback.

    Sigh, Lakers. No prolonged focus.

  110. Dwight can play energized all he wants, he still needs work on his post game…and here comes the clippers with the ten point lead..

  111. Green has been wide open twice in the last 3 plays, MWP’s guy.

  112. And just as I say it… terrible 0-9 run.

  113. What’s the point? Down to 3 and then right back up to 12. Shocking.

  114. Can tell from Nashes body language he’s getting pissed off.

  115. We are the “old” team and they are the young team and their bench has played 13 more minutes than ours tonight. Not a good combo.

  116. How long will it take the fair weather Laker Fans to convert. I say before the end of the year. And it looks to be a very long drought for the lake show.

  117. From bad to worse.

  118. That was the old Karl Malone rake down that pops your shoulder out of socket.

  119. Like that Nash and Bryant are looking to work that 1-2 post or pnr.

    friggin howard – lazy screen. can’t be bothered to actually make the pick.

  120. Nash is disappointing. I mean is the pick n roll with a big the only, thing he can do?

  121. Dwight is not a smart player. Another goal tending. Ahhh

  122. Who is Dwight pointing at on that Griffin dunk? That looked like his responsibility.

  123. 2-10 and a combined 5 rebounds out of Pau/Metta and a combined -30 tonight. Kobe and Nash -4 despite playing more mins.

  124. Meeks needs to learn how to pass the ball to others on fastbreaks. Jump balls are wastd possessions for the lakers

  125. The more I watch Howard, the more I truly wonder how muchof his shortcomings are really mental rather than physical. He looks like he’s playing in a fog. If it’s truly pain or severe muscle weakness that’s causing him to stand in place and rotate slowly, then he very simply should not be playing. I find it hard to believe his doctors would allow that to happen.

    Meeks is much faster with the live dribble than I give him credit for. He rarely does anything well off the dribble, but at least he looks fast.

  126. Really, Pau? Worthless.

  127. Please name a worse starting PF then Pau is right now.

    How can Gerry Buss sit and watch this humiliation.

  128. Game over.

  129. Lakers are just getting schooled right now. I hope d’antoni pulls a popovich and sits his starters if the lead doesn’t drop down to 10 in the 4th quarter.

  130. So…. How is tonight’s loss Kobe’s fault? That’s the post I am waiting to read.

  131. j guess you guys are right, Pau´s gonna be gone soon..
    Kobe with 5 steals tonight, impressive

  132. Jodie Meeks is shooting 2 of 10 right now or largely wide open, uncontested shots.

  133. Kobe didn’t score 90.

  134. This team as it is just dont work, we need to make major roster changes now starting with Pau i love the guy but he is just worthless right now, i dont understand the idiocy of Meeks going off to the races everytime he gets a rebound i dont think i see him score 3 times all season like that he is a spot on 3 shooter and sucking at that too, Metta is a brick machine, they need to do something and do it fast because this is not even a playoff caliber team, I cant believe Dwight’s hands are as bad as Kwame Brown, this is a disaster , not other way around it, my dissapointment is MASSIVE.

  135. Nash for 3, should be a staple of the offence.

  136. Can someone explain the positive and negatives to using the amnesty on Pau?

  137. Dwight is just….not healthy, this team is just really what its record indicates..

  138. I’ll give MDA this, even he realizes that sitting Pau is a necessity here.

  139. Meeks has miss at the very least 6 uncontested 3s

  140. Vegas has the Lakers only 57% to make the playoffs.

    Hard to disagree.

    Kobe and Nash are all we have.

  141. Nobody on this team should be shooting right now except for Kobe and Nash. Nobody!

  142. Meeks is beginning to look eerily like “the Machine”, I bet he drills the hell out of those shots in practice.

  143. Waiting comments on how bad Kobe is.Do not shoot Kobe give to Metta or Pau.

  144. I’ve never been so sad as to laugh and so disappointed (sports wise) in a looonggg time. Its hard to see Kobe go out like this in his last few seasons of greatness. Mitch is GREAT with recruiting superstars, but is low-key terrible on pieces surrounding them lately.

  145. I hate to harp on this, but Meeks is 2-11. If he hits a few of those, then this game is much much closer.

  146. Hill is out. This is bad..in the future too..

  147. Nash-Kobe need to play a give and go game the rest of the way.

  148. Darius Morris has a -18 in 10 minutes of floor time.

  149. So close to another turnover by Howard, he has 3 on record tonight and has easily been stripped at least a half dozen other times.

    Dude needs to get a set of power grips and use them whenever he is not playing basketball.

  150. Your starting forwards Pau and Metta.

    5 POINTS

    Thanks for showing up guys.

    Ouch!

  151. Dwight right now is overrated and kobe is carrying this team. I would give the ball to kobe every time down the floor.

  152. who is that #24?

    i will give him more than a 10 days contract!

  153. I have to say, although I am pretty tough on Dwight, given what he is capable of and what he is actually doing, he still has 19 and 12 with a couple blocks – too many turnovers, has missed a lot of rotation tonight, but he is not why we are losing.

    We are losing because of Pau, MWP, Meeks, Morris and D’Antonu who appears clueless.

  154. Jamal crawford not even playing and the lead is still double digits…

  155. Wasting Kobe’s controlled and efficient game…

  156. Paul’s flopping is really starting to get to me.

  157. This Laker team won’t make the playoffs. Heads will roll. Pau needs to be traded, or fired, immediately. Dwight isn’t playing with passion; he can go too. Metta is hit and miss; more miss. Kobe has successfully shown everyone why he overshoots. Great. He’ll average 35 shots a game now. Now that Phil will be a part of the family, Jerry, please let him coach this team next season.

  158. The lakers would more than likely amnesty pau if they can’t trade him. Pau trade value has plummeted. His offense is terrible, He can’t defend one on one, can’t defend the pnr, and is to slow to be a decent help defender. It’ll be very difficult to unload him for talent. There’s only one real trade situation out there but dont want to get edited.

    The lakers were dead end wrong in hiring dantoni and his gimmick philosophy that has been very unsuccessful everyone with every roster except the golden years in Phoenix.

  159. What is MWP DOING???!!!

  160. i love how Dwight tries to make his DEFENSE speech huddles central, while not doing anything!

  161. can someone tell Meeks:

    no dribbling
    no penetration!

    GIVE THE BALL UPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPP

  162. thats game

    and god – how much do we miss shannon brown?

    and really he only got 4mill – was really worth it

  163. What sport is Meeks playing? Soccer? Why is he still out there?

    Oh that’s right they have no one else.

  164. oy yeah,today we saw,once more,that the real issue is,as alwyas,Kobe’s shot selection and approach

    ROTFLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL

    and some guys even get paid to write such things

  165. Kobe playing some pretty solid D on CP3 too.

  166. Question: Has there ever been a worse performing NBA team when you consider the Payroll? Discuss…

  167. DOWN ONLY 4!

  168. KOBE LOOKED at USSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS

    and nailed the 2

    97-99

  169. WE CAN DO THIS PEOPLE!! GO DEFENSE GO DEFENSE

  170. Yeah, I wish that Kobe guy would stop shooting. Whatever. Mamba!

  171. This would be amazing. After how poorly this team has played…. I’d like to see Meeks get a chance to redeem himself.

  172. WOW Kobe….

  173. Mace–

    Take it elsewhere.

  174. 7&7: From a basketball perspective – there are no advantages or disadvantages to using the amnesty. It is simply a financial move.
    Fern: What happened to the optimism? You could have been our last one : )

  175. crazy efficiency from Kobe compared to the 20% shooting from everyone else not named dwight

  176. Really Dwight?

    Ahhhhhh

  177. garbage call!!!!!! what about the offensive foul on the hook on Kobe by Paul

  178. The most obvious foul on that play was Paul hooking Kobe, last I checked that is an offensive foul. The body contact by Howard was minimal at best.

  179. wow only 2 pts can we survive this???

  180. I hate this ESPN announcer, he is very annoying

  181. Thanks for your help Pau. Worthless.

    Paul seldom misses clutch shots.

    Hard to win when u get 5 points from your forwards.

  182. Gasol is useless. he was in prime position to get a offensive rebound but nope its off Gasol out of bounds.

  183. That shot over Kobe was brutal. And way too easy.

  184. Thank you, David Stern.

  185. Think these dribble between his legs, crossover into a fade away 17-20 footer shots by Paul are easy….try it some time. Kobe is doing a great job making him take tough shots. Paul (before the intentional fouls) has 26 points on 25 shots, that is not exactly efficient scoring.

  186. If nothing else, it is supremely fun to watch Kobe and Chris Paul go at it.

  187. bummer –
    have a good one everybody, we´ll get `em next time

  188. Make Paul drive to the lane, not give him that step back shot because he usually makes them. Make Paul give up the ball, not allow a great clutch shooter to shoot. So yea, it was poor defense by Kobe.

  189. Gasol, 2 points (1 of 6), 4 rebounds and -20 in 28 minutes. Is this the worst professional basketball game in his career? It would have to be right up there.

  190. Coulda woulda shoulda. Our role players are inconsistent. Howard is inconsistent. Pau is non-existant. The only consistent player on this team is Kobe. (You might be able to throw Hill and Nash in there.)

    Btw, if you just look at Howard’s numbers tonight, he had a pretty decent night. However, when you watch the game….it was a different story. Pau was just terrible. Having said all that- we were 2 Meeks 3-pointers from a win.

  191. Lakers get close but unable to dig themselves out of another hole. Hard to win when 2 of the starting front court scores 4 points (2-12).

  192. @ Joe M: disagree, if Paul gets in the lane you are looking at an easy dunk for someone else, playing D against a guard like him, on this team is all about keeping him out of the lane – give him those steps back long jumpers all night.

    No NBA coach would ever tell their team to allow Paul to drive the lane, that, with all due respect, is crazy.

  193. Either the team can use the same intensity every game or else losing to weak teams while losing close games to strong teams and playing huge minutes is a waste of energy

  194. KobeBeefandNashPotatos January 4, 2013 at 10:37 pm

    Does anyone else think our starting lineup should be different? Either start small with MWP at the 4, or actually start Jamison as a stretch four. Why not have Pau come off the bench as an impact 6th man who controls the second unit? Sub DH out and put Gasol on the block where he belongs, still paired with a stretch four (MWP/Jamison). There are 30min per game as the go to 6th man, and it would shore up the bench and provide more fluidity on offense. I hate watching Gasol’s skills not get utilized.

  195. Kobe – another 40+ minute game.

    Even if we make the playoffs it is hard to imagine he will have anything left – if he stays healthy.

  196. Man – I cant believe that we a have a serious chance of not making the playoffs – its crazy

    If anything the good news this week is that Phil is now a part of the buss family and if when the team gets handed over to the children maybe jeanie can get Phil to be a part of the teams brain-trust again.

  197. Lakers players who don’t get involved in the offense, lose interest and energy on defense.

    Gasol getting positioned out on the 3 point line is absolutely ludicrous. This is where D’antoni has him.

    Howard got a ton of feeds early in the game and he became energized.

    This team is hopeless. Especially with D’antoni as coach.

    They are built around a guy who needs a ton of shots per night. For better or worse.And this same guy doesn’t have the energy to play a full 48 on defense ’cause he reserves much of it for offense.

    And then there is the old PG who needs a fluid system for him to dribble around in to be his most potent, otherwise he is average.

    The only way the culture of the Lakers could ever change would have to be with Bryant. That is the only way this thing could get better. We all know Kobe Bryant is not going to change.

    They are stuck. Getting rid of Gasol is not the decision that makes this team better.

  198. They got two lucky three point shots at the shot clock buzzer too.

  199. so

    who should shot more???????????????????????

  200. love to C the comments of Gasol’s DEFENDERS!

  201. Well that was actually a pretty good game by the Lakers (more specifically Kobe, Howard, and Nash plus Hill’s always welcomed energy), since quite honestly I was expecting a blowout. I believe the Lakers actually won the turnover battle, which allowed them to keep within striking reach for the length of the game plus give the Clippers trouble at times in the half-court offense.

    The difference in defense between Howard and Pau on Blake was quite apparent, to say the least.

    I just wished they did this every game as they’d be in the thick of the standings had they won the games they’re supposed to win, as opposed to showing up like this only against tough opponents.

  202. by the way, Gasol dismissed that Clippers are great team

    he really did show how to approach THIS game!

  203. Kobe for 102

    it is all what is left for this great season!

  204. So it is pretty clear at this point. This Lakers team is still pretty weak, even with Nash and Gasol. I think we can end the whole, “lets just be patient and wait it out.” I will continue to say it. 32 games into the season and this Lakers team is fighting for the 8th seed! 2 games below 500. Building your team around old allstar players is not the answer. The twin tower approach is not the answer. We need young athletic talent that can play consistent on both sides on the floor. A trade for Gasol is needed, or this season is over.

  205. Kobe shoots a lot because he is a SHOOTING GUARD, Jordan is Jordan but he shooted a ton too, tonight we got what we expected and more from Kobe he had to score and guard CP he had a good game but he had 30 on 25 shots, Dwight and Nash got a double double but Nash needs to be more agressive especially knowing the hole the team is in. Dwight foul out was stupid but not as stupid and ridiculous as being a 7 footer have a almost gimme offensive rebound falling into your hands for a chance to redeem yourself after a Kwame level performance and slap the >€+%#}*%#%^*^##% ball out of bounds. Pau should be done in LA. I dont care what we get back. I know MDA put him away from his confort zone but he needs to adjust. And the times he try to post up he looked pathetic and let not talk about his ” defense” and how he got back on defense. I love the big spaniard but he should be done as a Laker

  206. 5-25 from Pau,metta,meeks (though meeks got 14pts at least). Doesn’t matter who the coach is – when two of your starters play that poorly it puts you in a tough spot. I think though MDA n Mitch have to sit down and put together a plan and a dead on date where they either pull the plug on the season or they make a trade sooner than later.

    And before anyone starts saying that VDN is such a better coach – just remember that the clippers went thru 3 years worth of questioning their coach before this year.

  207. Hard to beat a good team like the Clippers when your frontcourt goes missing. Nash being back hasn’t exactly done wonders for Gasol like some suggested it would.

    What’s his trade value at now?

  208. So if we don’t make the playoffs there are some good 1st round draft choices out there!

    Oh that’s right they gave them away.

    Never mind.

  209. You know what, I don’t think this team is going anywhere. Dwight is what he is — not a franchise player, healthy or not. Pau has permanently disappeared. Nash is not going to be dominant. D’antoni is not going to turn into a coach who knows how to maximize the talents. Mitch is out of rabbits to pull out of hats.

    So I’m just going to watch for Kobe now. I’m rooting for him to win the scoring title and set a personal best for efficiency. Guy is amazing.

  210. They wont give up on the season, uhh this is the Lakers not the Kings or the Raptors you wont make the playoffs 57 of 62 seasons by giving up seasons , but they need to get rid of Pau and get some talent especially on defense or at least a a couple of shooters, i would make Pau ride the pine and start Hill, if he is not that hurt, he brings energy and hustle at least, but like Nash himself said after this week we will know where this team is for real.

  211. Funny thought. Everyone was so worried about how Kobe would adjust to Nash running the show. Would he share the ball…would he be able to play off the ball…would he allow Nash to have the keys to the offense. Well, Nash has helped Kobe have an incredible year so far and Kobe has done an incredible job of adapting his game and scoring more off of cuts and spot ups.

    Who would have thought that Kobe would benefit from Nash more than Howard or Pau?

  212. Wow, did Meeks just say that maybe he needs to get up more shots before and after the game? I was really disappointed in the last game when Howard, Duhon, Nash, Darius, Blake and Hill were the only players out there putting up extra shots.

    The difference in the game tonight is that Green scored 5 points on uncontested shots on 5-7. While our shooter went 5-21. Meeks put up 21 shots! Almost more than Nash and Howard combined. Then for him to make the comment that he THINKS he should put up more shots before and after the game…unbelievable.

    Nash must become more assertive on offense. I’d much rather he miss 5-21 than Meeks or Metta and Pau.

    Every time Hill gets on a roll he get an injury of some kind. Understandable, considering how aggressive he plays.

    I still think the Lakers will build off this game going forward in the next 4 games. I like them to play games with no rest they seem to play better.

    The Lakers could have given up when they were down by 18 but they fought back, so they obviously care.

    Let’s go Lakers.

  213. is the sky falling?

  214. Nash: 3/4. Meeks 3/13.

    Wow. Seriously, I know Nash is Nash but we just can’t afford to have him take just 4 shots in 36 mins.

  215. @kenoak – if they can find a way to get thru this and deal w some of the defensive issues, I could see hem both extending each others careers cause the fit together so well : natural scorer/passer. kobe and Nash have been on the same wave length ever since the trade for him to come here became possible. They’re the only two guys who are focused enough and have the bball iq, talent, and the actual competitive drive to make it happen. Those two respect eachother and I don’t think any body else puts in more work than they do into maintaining themselves and being ready to play. Even if Nash isn’t dour and moody like Kobe – he’s still a real leader in a serious way that Dwight certainly isn’t right now. Not surprising that they got it figured out

    As for people who call for Nash to be dominant – you obviously haven’t followed his game or him at all. His mo is to insure everyone gets theirs and tries to make it as easy as possible. If other guys aren’t hitting shots or being threats – it makes it near impossible for him to get his looks because they then switch everything and crowd and take away his shot. When Nash has scored big in the past – he’s also usually had double digit assists as well – as other guys hitting shots, frees him up to go one on one more. But w pau, metta etc… Providing nothing tonight – there was no lanes for him to drive tonight as everyone just collapsed and filled everything. Chris paul had a lot more room to work w/o having everyone elses guys coming over to help all the time.

    As for Dwight – this insistentence that he has that he has to be the man offensively and being force fed to start the game just killed this team at the start. No rhythm, everyone standing around watching him miss gimmes, and generally just making shitty decisions. His bball iq is nowhere what it takes – he killed LA’s chances w that stupid foul on cp at the end (the one time there was legit rotation coming over to block/help out – not only putting cp on line when lakers were only 2 down – but also fouling out.

  216. @form – i wouldn’t say its falling, but they gotta do something. Pau can complain about not being used offensively – but when the lakers are still the 6th best offesnive team in the league – they obviously don’t need his offensive contributions – thats why systems complaints etc… from Magic about mis using Pau is so bloody annoying and misleading. For all the offensive issues – they don’t need his offense. however – he could bring something better than combined 3-18 he’s brought to the table the past 2 games. and only 4 rebounds tonight. Can’t blame it all on offensive positioning as he only grabbed 4 def rebs. He’s giving them nothing right now.

    Nash +12 in 36 minutes 12 pts, plus 10 assists on 3/4 shooting plus 3 freethrows.
    Kobe +6 in 44 38 pts on 15 for 25 whcih aint too shabby only quibble is
    1-6 on 3′s but he had to force some shots

    Dwight +5 in 36 mins Got an ugly 21 pts (his game was a lot uglier than the box score
    indicates) but at least grabbed 15 rebounds even if
    he makes dumb decisions at bad times.

    Pau -20 in 27mins only 4 rebs (no off), only 2 pfs, and 2 assists. Shot 1-6 and was
    brutal and none effective

    I know metta and meeks had crappy games too – but at least there was effort and they were trying to do something out there – a least they bring that every night. there is nothing stopping Pau from playing defense, or driving to the hole, or posting up closer. He’s doing nothing to make a force of himself out there even when given the chance. MDA hasn’t tod him he needs to stay out at the 3 line, but you watch Pau’s body language and he’s just got no appetite to fight for position or make any sort of real effort. he just drifts out there. frustrating as hell because we all know he can play as evidenced by this summer.

  217. Nash is a smart player. He mostly shot the ball when he had open looks, dependent on how they were guarding him. Meeks gets more shots because that’s something the defense is giving up. Meeks is supposed to play that role. That’s why all five guys are important on the floor.