Around The World (Wide Web): Henry, Lakers-Heat, Kobe, Phil Jackson

Ryan Cole —  January 23, 2014

From Ryan Ward, Lakers Nation: The Los Angeles Lakers may finally be starting to get players back healthy with Xavier Henry potentially being the first of six injured players to return to the floor. Henry went down with bone bruise in his knee back on Dec. 29 against the Philadelphia 76ers and now appears to be nearing a return. Although Henry seems to be on pace to get back on the floor sooner rather than later, the Lakers newcomer will miss the next two games according to Dave McMenamin of ESPN. Along with Henry nearing a return, Kobe Bryant will be re-evaluated sooner than expected. Bryant was supposed to be re-evaluated at some point in February, but now will be checked after the current road trip comes to an end. Jordan Farmar is another Laker that might be back in the lineup in the coming weeks. Farmar will re-evaluated in mid-February for a hamstring injury.

From Dave McMenamin, ESPN LA: When the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat take the floor Thursday, four of the last five NBA championship-winning teams will be represented. But with the Heat coming off three straight Finals appearances and two straight titles, the Lakers’ back-to-back championships in 2009 and 2010 seem like a distant memory. So much has changed within the Lakers organization since 2010 — Phil Jackson’s retirement, Mike Brown’s dismissal, Mike D’Antoni’s hiring, Dr. Jerry Buss’ death, Dwight Howard’s departure, Kobe Bryant’s torn Achilles, etc. — but perhaps the most dramatic is that a team that once defined itself by the precepts of Jackson’s triangle offense now finds itself playing so-called “small ball.”

From Dan Feldman, Pro Basketball Talk:  Strangely, Kobe Bryant was recently held up as an example for why Jabari Parker should return to Duke for a second season. Kobe, of course, went to the NBA directly from high school and has had an extremely fruitful career, both financially and in terms of on-court success. But I guess he was only a low-rotation backup as a rookie, or something. Only the most twisted reading of Kobe’s career would indicate his bypassing of college wasn’t a roaring success. Just take it from Kobe himself.

From Eric Pincus, LA Times: Former Lakers coach Phil Jackson said he expects Kobe Bryant to make a strong return before the end of the season. ”I think that he’s going to be able to perform at a high level. People are going to be surprised,” Jackson said in an interview Wednesday on Fox Sports Live. Jackson noted that Bryant’s game will need to evolve as he works his way back post-injury. ”I think post-up game and screen roll is going to have to become … a major part of his game. I don’t think he’s going to be able to just break [players] down [off the dribble],” Jackson said. “Defense becomes the biggest problem …. as you get old.” With the Lakers (16-26) struggling, Jackson said Bryant should sit out the rest of the rest of the season if he’s not healthy by April.

 

Ryan Cole

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3 responses to Around The World (Wide Web): Henry, Lakers-Heat, Kobe, Phil Jackson

  1. It’s always funny to me that so many think MDA invented the stretch power forward. The guys who really loved using the stretch power forward to space the floor were Rudy T and Phil Jackson. People would kill Phil for wanting a guy like Robert Horry on the floor when he couldn’t guard all the great PFs in the post. Phil often also used Tony Kukoc at PF with the Bulls. Guys who can shoot are great. Ideally you would want five guys on the floor who can shoot from distance.

  2. I’m not sure there is anything new to be introduced to basketball. What MDA did do was organize an offensive system that took advantage of the rules changes brought about by the play of the Detroit Pistons and NY Nicks. Parts of this system are used by many successful teams today.

    This doesn’t mean MDA is a great coach, just an innovative one. Often times people who introduce something new then get stuck in their innovation and fall behind. I think that is the complaint of many on this blog – along with those who resent Phil Jackson’s replacement.

    I really do like a lot of what MDA brings to the Lakers, but I too find it hard to comprehend why he doesn’t find a bigger place in the game for Kaman or Hill. Granted, they occupy a crowded pair of positions and you can’t successfully play everyone. However, the end-of-game out-of-bounds staffing and defense would seem to fall directly on his shoulders.

    On to Miami.

  3. On to Miami, indeed.

    I think I’m gonna be sick …

    ——————–

    Re: Kaman and Hill, yeah I don’t get it either …