Preview and Chat: Lakers vs. Mavericks

Darius Soriano —  April 3, 2014

With the Lakers’ loss to the Kings on Wednesday night, they fell to 2nd to last in the West and boast the 6th worst record in the league. With only seven games left to play, the Lakers place in the standings is pretty much the only compelling storyline left.

Will they stay in 6th? Will they “climb” the standings and get to 5th or even 4th? A few games to watch as the season comes to a close are the Lakers game against the Jazz in the 2nd to last game of the year and the two games the Celtics play against the 76ers. Those three games may mean the difference between staying in 6th or moving up in the lottery. This is what the Lakers are fighting for now.

On the other end of the spectrum is Friday’s opponent, the Mavs. On Thursday night they held on to get a much needed win over the Clippers, advancing their cause to make the playoffs in the process. The Mavs’ magic number is now 6 and they control their own destiny to make the tournament.

Of course, playing a hard fought game against the Clippers isn’t exactly the best set of circumstances to be in when coming into Staples to play the Lakers. The Mavs have the Lakers outgunned from a talent perspective, but fatigue can be a great equalizer. Add in the fact that the Lakers can get hot from behind the arc and have been carrying the mantra of “player haters” who want to try and spoil playoff teams’ hopes and this creates an interesting scenario that bears watching.

All things being equal, the Mavs should win this game simply because they are the better team. Add in the fact that the Lakers remain banged up and shorthanded (my guess is that Pau and Nash both sit out again and that Xavier Henry may join them) and a full strength Mavs team looks even better on paper than they already did.

But the games aren’t played on paper (something people who watched last season’s Lakers know all too well) and if the Mavs come in tired, unfocused, or a combination of both and the Lakers have a chance to steal a game. (As an aside, I don’t know which fan base would be more upset if this actually occurred considering how much wins and losses mean to both franchises right now.)

As for the X’s and O’s of this game, there are a few match ups that I am interested in seeing. First, is the battle of the point guards where Jose Calderon and Kendall Marshall will face off. On most nights Marshall is outmatched physically and is relegated to either chasing a quicker player around or forced to play an opposing shooting guard or small forward (whichever is the lesser offensive player) in order to be hidden defensively. Calderon is neither a speedster nor an overwhelming physical talent, so Marshall will likely match up with him all night. What Calderon is, however, is crafty with his dribble and a strong pick and roll practitioner. Marshall will have his hands full trying to navigate screens and will have to choose wisely when deciding whether to go under picks and give up jumpers or chase over the top and allow Calderon an angle to penetrate.

The equation gets trickier when Dirk is setting the screen as the big German will either flare to the arc to spot up for a three pointer or dive to the FT line area where he can get into the middle of the defense and either shoot his jumper or try to work a mid-range post up that draws help defenders and opens up teammates. It will be interesting to see how Ryan Kelly (and Jordan Hill) do when defending the big German and whether they can effectively move him off his preferred spots to make him more of a passer than the efficient scorer he’s been all season (and all his career).

The other match up I am interested in seeing is Kent Bazemore getting some minutes on Monta Ellis. While I envision Meeks starting on Monta, I can also see Bazemore getting some chances on Ellis when Marion slides up to PF or when cross-matches occur. In recent games Bazemore has been more active in using his length to try and disrupt ball-handlers and has been pretty good about getting on ball steals. Monta has always been an attack player, but has really cut down on shooting threes this season in favor of trying to get into the teeth of the defense more. I am interested in seeing if Bazemore can keep Monta out of the paint and use his length to contest his jumper as well as force him into turnovers when he tries to create off the bounce.

Offensively, I am interested in seeing how much the Lakers can use tempo to their advantage to try and wear the Mavs down. As mentioned, Dallas should be a bit tired and the Lakers would love nothing more than try and increase the pace and make Dallas get into a chaotic game, increasing the chances for mistakes to be made. At the end of the Clippers game the Mavs showed cracks in how they handle defensive pressure and did a poor job of keeping their poise and playing smart. If the Lakers can recreate that environment in this game, Dallas will have issues.

Where you can watch: 7:30pm start time on TWC Sportsnet. Also listen on ESPN Radio 710AM.

Darius Soriano

Posts

66 responses to Preview and Chat: Lakers vs. Mavericks

  1. Warren Wee Lim April 4, 2014 at 1:34 am

    First post me. What?!

  2. Renato Afonso April 4, 2014 at 4:26 am

    Well, I don’t think that we can increase defensive pressure on the Mavs because we haven’t increased defensive pressure on anyone this season. I don’t think the Bazemore/Ellis matchup will tell us a lot about either player, specially because both players are not sound defensively. Bazemore has the size advantage and one would guess that he would take that but I’m not sure that will be part of our gameplan. We could really use those 2 inches and 20 pounds he has on Monta on the low block.

    Regarding the Dirk cover off screen and pops or either in iso’s, I don’t think we have a player capable of guarding him in any situation. This is not a knock on our roster, as the man as simply been outstanding for more than a decade. To guard him effectively you need to use a tall wing player with superb defensive skills (see Battier) and design a plan to contain him when he goes to the low post against a smaller player. I would say that Wes Johnson has the physical skills to contain Dirk but he’s light years away from that.

    On the Marshall/Calderon matchup, I don’t think this is a good matchup for him. Calderon is not a speedster but he can take his man one on one and he’s always very controlled when dribbling. Remember that episode between him and KG in Toronto? He held his own. Make no mistake, I absolutely love Calderon’s game and if I could choose a point guard to run my team (not talking about superstars here, but mid-level guys) he would be it. He’s a very good shooter both off the dribble as well as after the catch. He can read defenses really well and he’s tremendous on the pick and roll. And, he’s very smart on defense, even though sometimes he can have lapses. Not a good matchup at all. But what makes it worse, and I think I’ve already adressed it in a previous post, is that our pick and roll defense is atrocious. There’s no plan for each opponent. There’s no standard defense, there’s nothing. It’s just chaos that ends with our defense being split by the ball handler too many times…

    But, if the Mavs come out flat, we have a shot at winning by increasing the tempo. Even if our team was playing at a slower pace with good defense and good half court sets, this is the game that I would tell him to increase the pace. Doesn’t matter if Monta goes off for 34 points with this pace and that Marion at 4 and Dirk at 5 would be our biggest nightmare. We’re overmatched at every single position except center (when Dirk is not there) and the Mavs are on a SEGABABA.

    So, today i feel like telling MDA the following:

    Run Forrest, Run!

  3. Looking forward to a column in FB&G on this ESPN ranking:

    http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/id/10710924/2014-nba-front-office-rankings-owners

    Darius were you involved in the rankings?

  4. Parrothead Phil April 4, 2014 at 7:48 am

    I was just looking at the standings after Dallas’ win last night which placed them 7th in the West. The 8th seed, Memphis, would be the 3rd seed in the (L)eastern conference. Woof!

  5. Sid,
    I did not vote on the front office survey.

  6. darius: you caught us off guard with this dallas preview from last night? thought they played already; just as well you need a Friday off for a change. let us continue to talk amongst ourselves as we usually do anyways, right??

    at this point we’re too numb to be surprised by anything the lakers produce, or lack of it thereof. dallas, just another game against a foe in the western conference that have playoff aspirations; what are they, 7th? in the playoff picture of things a win vs dallas only benefits the psyche of those who can’t stand the owner’s face – mark cuban. other than that, who cares that we lose other than inching closer to the abyss known as the nba lottery position.

    the java is wearing out, time for a nap. oh wait, i’m still at work.

    Go lakers

  7. Rusty Shackleford April 4, 2014 at 9:22 am

    General Patton Kupchak – Tank Commander.

  8. Everyone should read the ESPN rankings as to how the NBA community ranks both Owners and Execs. They make the distinction between these two as the “Owner” being the guy who controls the team financially, and the “Execs” as the top basketball guys. As everyone knows, I (and others here inclusive of rr) have advocated for years that Jim should step back as owner and not be involved in basketball decisions. He does not have the correct background and his track record suggests that leaving basketball to Mitch would be the better course of action. These ESPN rankings are supporting my point of view. Here are a few highlights:

    1) Of the 30 “Owners”, only 24 are also on the “Execs” listing. Let me emphasize. Only 24 owners are involved in Basketball decision making !!! (heard this before anywhere?).

    2) Often – more than one guy is listed on the “Execs” listing. Where this is the case, the most influential guy is listed first. For example Riley, Jackson, and Pop are all listed first in their groups. Guess what – the Lakers are listed as Jim Buss/Mitch Kupchak !!!I

    3) For the record – on the “Owners” list it is listed as Jim and Jeanie Buss (I would think that The Boss would be listed first). We are one of only three teams who have more than one owner listed. So in other words – with 27 other teams there is absolutely no ambiguity as to who The Boss is.

    4) The Lakers rank a pitiful 14th on the owners list, which of course is based on the reputation of previous owners, otherwise it would be lower. Here is what ESPN said:

    What happened to the Lakers?
    For years, Dr. Jerry Buss was regarded as the gold standard of NBA owners. But since his death in February 2013, the team has teetered under the direction of his children.
    Voters on our panel now rank the Lakers an unexceptional 14th. Given the turmoil surrounding the organization, the team’s performance on the floor and the enormous contract granted to Kobe Bryant this past fall, it’s fair to ask if that ranking is generous, imbued by the halo effect of history.

    5) The Lakers rank an even worse 16th on the Execs list. This is on spite of the presence of Mitch Kupchak who has multiple rings !!! Who do we think is dragging this down?

    6) Of the top 10 teams on the Exec list, only 2 have owners involved at all in personnel and one of them is very minor in that Nick Arison plays second fiddle to Riley in Miami. Cuban is the other one, but again, he takes a back seat to Donnie Nelson. The other 3 teams that have any owner involvement in the Exec area are Golden State (again minor as they not only have Bob Myers, but also Jerry West as the primary decision makers), the Bobcats (Jordan), and the Nuggets (Kroenke). That’s it – the other 24 teams do not have the owner involved as an Exec. Having Jim as our primary Executive (again Buss/Kupchak) is unique in the entire league. Nobody doe this excerpt for us. Why would they?

    This is very simple. Owners should not be the primary decision makers with regard to basketball (and are not in most cases). Teams are all clamoring to get guys like Pat Riley, Phil Jackson, and Jerry West to be their decision makers. There are 29 owners who realize that others are more qualified than they are. We have #30. This needs to stop. If Jeanie is the Boss – then her brother needs to be fired as a basketball executive. He is not needed in that area as these lists validate that.

  9. the other Stephen April 4, 2014 at 9:54 am

    Lol at Kupchak the Tank Commander.

  10. Nefariousgnome April 4, 2014 at 10:18 am

    @Renata – regarding the Dirk matchup, I agree generally with the mold of guy you’d want to be guarding Dirk (though perhaps not with your particular example). I just wanna reminisce a bit about Odom, who was probably one of the better matchups for Dirk from a physical standpoint. I can’t say I remember him playing Dirk particularly well or poorly, and I’m sure guys here will let me know how that usually went, but for some reason, my mind went straight to LO when I thought about matching up with Dirk.

  11. Ok Warren, this is your last chance to reclaim your former glory.

  12. Ko,

    Can you check the master list– am I down for 28 or 29 wins for the case of wine? Specifically, I need to know if tonight is a ‘must win’ or not.

  13. I can’t figure out which is the bigger mismatch……… the Laker players vs Mavs players……MDA vs Carlye……..or Jimbo vs Cuban.

    Can you imagine a one on one game between Dirk and Ryan Kelly?
    It would be a lopsided affair, but nowhere near as lopsided as a basketball IQ contest between MDA and Carlye. That would be an absolute massacre……..and what about Cuban vs Jimbo?

    Cuban turned a laughingstock of a franchise into one of the premiere franchises in the NBA.
    Jimbo turned THE premiere franchise in the NBA into a laughingstock.

    When the Mavs won the ring, the entire arena was chanting the owner’s name. That is amazing. Can you imagine what the crowd would be chanting if they saw Jimbo’s mug on the jumbotron?

    I take it back. I can figure out which is the biggest mismatch.

  14. http://basketball.realgm.com/wiretap/232772/Pau-Gasol-Will-Factor-Winning-Over-Money;-Bulls-Cavs-Bobcats-Grizzlies-Expected-To-Pursue

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/nba/news/20140404/pau-gasol-los-angeles-lakers-kobe-bryant/

    Sounds like Pau is gone – saying he wants to play for a championship then says money won’t be top priority but then that “Length and money will be factors”.

    1. despite how quickly Kobe seems to think you can immediately rebuild despite his contract, it won’t happen here in a time frame that could ever possibly accomodate Pau’s deterioating physical game.

    2. If as quoted – Pau is looking for both money and length in a contract AND if someone is willing to offer him 10 a year, Lakers need to run away. I could see offering Pau a one year deal and going from there – but not at 10 million for what is likely going to be a another season where he misses at least a quarter to various ailments.

    If he’s sitting out the last 7 games due to vertigo if as they say, then he’s played his last game in a Laker uniform. Despite feelings of some fans and/or Kobe – it’s time for this team to treat every decision as a business decision and keep personal feelings out of it – just as the Kam article yesterday said it may be unfair but necessary to axe MDA, it’s time to cut the line w Gasol as well.

    Hopefully Kupchak will sit down w Kobe and say this is whats going on and tell him – “we’re paying you huge dollars that has handicapped us a bit going forward – we don’t have a problem paying you because we think we owe you for what you’v given this franchise. You’re going to get your money and we understand that you want to compete as soon as possible and we’re going to do that and we will keep you involved – but don’t go out of the way to badmouth the FO when your contract is just as much part of the problem as you might be part of the solution”.

  15. Never mind: I just checked (slow work day): I guessed 30. Raising the white – er, p&g – flag.

    The following are all found in the comments dated Feb 4, for ‘Three on three preview…’ (resequenced by me). I did not check subsequent dates for later entries.

    shaun 26
    renato 27
    scorchee 28
    midwilshire 29
    lil pau 30
    manny p 32
    sufian 33

    I may be the last person on this board still rooting for wins, but 5-2 ain’t happening.

  16. https://fbcdn-sphotos-g-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash2/t1.0-9/419444_10151045778302257_1036804674_n.jpg

    I saved this pic from 2012. This is the Mitch Kupchak that we need to see this summer.

  17. ESPN put out the coach rankings today:

    http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/id/10717235/2014-nba-front-office-rankings-coaches

    D’Antoni is 20th–3 spots ahead of Shaw, and 9 behind Brad Stevens. Mike Brown is 26th.

  18. Opening day Dodgers for me.

    I slso think JC had 26. Might have to pull 2 cases for a tie. Now I am rooting for 2 wins!

    Go Dodgets. Boy has Lasorda gained some weight this year.

  19. Great

    Dodgers just became Lakers.

    6 runs 1 st inning by hated Giants.

  20. “The Chicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, Charlotte Bobcats and Memphis Grizzlies are expected to be potential options for Gasol, according to a poll of NBA executives.” — according to SI.

    I don’t see Pau fitting in well under Thibodeau’ defense-centric scheme, so Chicago seems unlikely. No one wants to move from L.A. to Cleveland, and Pau and Big Al would not seem to be a good fit together on the Hornets (ne Bobcats).

    If those are the primary contenders, and if the Lakers were to make a coaching change (both big ifs), then it would seem like the Lakers would have a decent chance of retaining Pau next season, should they want him back. Memphis would have its plusses in his eyes, but not so many one could automatically rule out his return to L.A. provided the front office doe what Pau would like it to.

    Memphis has great barbecue, but Pau’s an In-n-Out guy.

  21. I think a lot of what goes down with Pau will simply hinge on how much he wants to play with his brother. Marc has one year left on his deal in Memphis, so if they really want to play together, Pau might simply sign a cheap one-year deal with the Grizzlies. Pau has made an enormous amount of money playing basketball and the Gasol Family is very well-off even independent of the millions Marc and Pau have made in the NBA. So, this may be that rare situation in which money is not really an issue for a player in choosing a team.

  22. @Robert

    Your post confused me! You first stated in (1) that 24 of 30 owners ARE involved in basketball decision making as executives; then you stated in (6) that 24 of 30 owners ARE NOT involved.

    Either way, I get the point. The best owners in sports pay the right people to make the decisions they are likely not as qualified to make as those right people.

  23. …and the Gasol family is very well-off even independent of the millions Marc and Pau made . . .

    Huh? I believe Gasol’s Mom is a Doctor, and his Dad is a nurse. Not sure how where you got your info, but that is news to me. Enlighten me please.

  24. Bryan,

    My understanding is that Pau’s parents are pretty successful in Spain, and the Gasols are/were upper-middle class. Here is an SI.com article from 2001:

    _________

    Starting when he was eight, Pau would accompany Agustin, a 6’3″ guard, to a gym in the upper-middle-class Barcelona suburb where the family lived. Although always tall for his age, Pau played point guard until he was 13, and even after that, coaches encouraged him to hone his perimeter skills.
    By the time he was 15, Pau was already 6’7″ and playing on the FC Barcelona junior team, but he didn’t consider basketball to be more than a diversion. His career plan was to follow in the path of his parents—Agustin is a nursing administrator and Marisa a general practitioner—and go into medicine. At 18 Gasol enrolled in medical school at the University of Barcelona (Spanish students can go straight from high school to med school), but within a year the dueling demands of hoops and labs became too much. Encouraged by the confidence of his coaches, he dropped out to pursue basketball full time.

    ______

    While we may have different definitions of “very well-off”, I don’t really get why you would pick up that point and make a big deal about it, since it was not the key point of the post. It is pretty well-known that Pau’s background is very different than that of many NBA players.

  25. Ok Ko whinning about the Dodgers already? Its April 4th for crissakes!! Lol

  26. Fern

    Why do you think I am in the “Wine” business.

    At the game, Lasorda’s new restaurant is good.

  27. Well played Ko, hehe

  28. Clippers ownership is better then 29th now…They have a better practice facility then us….better players…. Better future….

  29. Jerke: You are correct – I messed up my double negatives there. The second part was correct. 24 of 30 owners are not involved in basketball decisions. Bottom line – owners should own. GM’s should manage. Jerry Jones types and Jim Buss types do not work out and should be in th history books like Al Davis of the Raiders. Owners do not generally do this anymore. and don’t in 24 out of 30 cases. I especially found it telling that Jim Buss’ name was listed in front of Mitch’s.
    rr: So MD is 20th and Mike Brown is 26th? Who was 23rd? Could be our next coach?

  30. Interesting, quoting an ESPN survey as being the definitive guide to the various power structures in the NBA. Sounds like finding information that fits a preconception, rather than a fact that would determine a viewpoint – and from such an authoritative and bipartisan source too.

  31. Craig W: Before you make statements about what I am doing – please read the data. The most telling part for me was the listing of all the GM’s and the Owners in a consolidated spot (especially the GM’s). Forget the rankings for a moment. The fact is that 24 of 30 teams have a GM group completely void of owners. And Jim is the only owner listed as the primary GM. Most of the successful teams in the league do not have this set up so why would we want it? It certainly has not been successful. Read #6 above again for the other 5 teams who have this set up. The Heat are the only top team and they have Riley as the final decision maker. Nobody and I mean nobody is doing what Jim does. Besides, I had a preconception about MD 2 years ago. Now many others have drawn the same conclusion. I am expecting the same over time with Jim.

  32. Lol sorry not my comment on your post – maybe Janes I think.

  33. Wow – OK – thanks
    Jerke – wrong reference. Thanks
    Jane – please see explanation above. My original #1 was confusing (and it was me – not you).

    This was all just a demonstration of why owners should stay out of the details. I own the team. rr runs the team. I am going back to my box to party. rr – please handle all of our draft picks, our coaches, and the scouts. Let me know when you need money and when it is time for me to take my picture (wearing a suit of course) with the trophy.

  34. For you Long Beach Grand Prix Fans.

    Sponsoring Mario Andretti dinner at LB Hilton on Thursday.

    Celebrity Drivers Dinner at Renasaunce Hotel Saturday.

    Stop by Lobby 5 to 9 for free tasting of our Andretti Wine and hear me wine about Lakers!

    Ask for me Ken

  35. Really Boston?

    Lose to Philly at home.

    Really?

  36. rr: “very we’ll off” and “upper middle class” are very different places on the food chain. To suggest that the Gasol family would be indifferent to the size of Pau’s likely last lucrative contract on account of their own wealth is inaccurate. Not picking a nit; just trying to keep the discussion factual. when offering a speculative position, one’s argument is made credible when one’s facts are in order. As someone who does a nice job of citing sources to bolster their argument, I know you get that!

  37. Really Boston?

    Lose to Philly at home.

    Really?

    Danny Ainge just trying to garner as many Ping Pong Balls as possible.

  38. Who would win in a game of horse Kwame Brown or Robert Sacre and how long would the game last?

  39. Lakers with the half-time lead, played a pretty good half of basketball. On another note, the Jazz won tonight.

  40. Warren Wee Lim April 4, 2014 at 10:26 pm

    Craig, dunno if I disappointed you but while I continue to root for wins, a loss is more beneficial at this point. They don’t need me for that.

    The worst spot is not that out of reach esp if we lose to Jazz in the next couple of days.

    Increase the odds of winning, we’re looking at the possibility of 5th worst.

  41. Warren Wee Lim April 4, 2014 at 10:29 pm

    In other news, Detroit is fighting hard to keep its pick. 1-8 its theirs, 9-below it belongs to Charlotte.

  42. Warren Wee Lim April 4, 2014 at 10:31 pm

    May 20th will be a defining day for us. Draft lottery. Circle your calendars peeps.

  43. rr: “very we’ll off” and “upper middle class” are very different places on the food chain. To suggest that the Gasol family would be indifferent to the size of Pau’s likely last lucrative contract on account of their own wealth is inaccurate.

    The first sentence is just your opinion, and unless you have inside information about Pau’s family, you have no way of knowing whether the second is true.

    You may be right, of course–Pau may try to get every single dollar that he can and his parents and other relatives may want him to do just that, and I was perhaps wrong not to qualify the statement more carefully. But everything that I have read about Pau, including stuff about his charity work, would indicate otherwise IMO. Also, Pau and Marc have made ~206M gross between them in the NBA alone, and that number does not include anything they have made in endorsements, contracts etc. in Spain and the rest of Europe.

    Many pro jocks come from families that do not have many people with college degrees, some support large extended families, and vanishingly few have a brother who has also made a ton of money in a more or less concurrent career.

    Pau may not care about any of this, and may simply go for the money and the PT. But his situation is very different, in several ways, than that of a more typical NBA player hitting the market.

  44. rr – please handle all of our draft picks, our coaches, and the scouts. Let me know when you need money and when it is time for me to take my picture (wearing a suit of course) with the trophy.

    Ha I am on the job.

  45. Lil Pau thank you for doing the back checking ….only 1 win away :) …. if we went winless over the next few games would I still get the wine since im closest?

  46. Just checked the schedule … the wine is as good as mine.

    Here are our final games

    Clippers
    Houston
    Golden state
    Memphis
    Utah
    San antonio

    Maybe we win againat utah but thats it … even san antonios scrubs will beat the LA Defenders

    Warren – maybe we can make MDA a sacrificial lamb on cinco de mayo to bring us luck for the 20th

  47. Hmmm… Caman DNP, Kobe’s still out, and Pau has “Vertigo”…

    Rest ‘em for Exum :)

    Oh, and ill be here to claim the wine if the Lakers mistakenly go 3 and 3 the rest of the way and win 28 games this year.

  48. Bryan, RR,

    Whatever your definition of ‘well-off’ the medical background might be significant. I suspect that the Gasols genetically created their boys. Who is 6′ 7″ at 15 years of age ????

    GOOOoooOOOOO LAKERS !!!

  49. Shaun,
    You & I are splitting that case at 26.
    However, I fear Dantoni’s exceptional coaching may betray us.
    We may beat Utah, and I don’t trust Popovich in the last game of the season. Their Big 3 sits while Dantoni’s fighting for his job & while the players fight for next year’s contracts.
    Renato’s chances @ 27 are still excellent.

  50. Another possibility is:
    No Pau
    No Kamen
    No Nash
    No Henry
    No Young

    “No Soup For You”

  51. On the other hand, maybe the team will go winless the rest of the season…
    Nobody had 25 wins?
    In that ‘case,’ Ko gets to sample his own wine – probably not a rare occurrence :)

  52. Warren Wee Lim April 5, 2014 at 12:58 pm

    I should get that wine if we end up having 25 wins. 25 is half of the 50 I predicted us to have so I deserve half of that case.

    Send it to Dipolog City of the Philippines.

  53. I mentioned this a month or so ago, but I say it agian before tip off of the Final Four

    Billy Donovan is our guy. Perfect in every way. A winner. Enthusiastic. Used to the spotlight. And could grow with us (would not be expected to win in year 1).

  54. Robert, I cosign your vote for Billy Donovan. Though, at this point, I’d cosign for the ghost of Christmas past.

    Any word on Kobe? Has he started a workout regime, yet?

  55. Unable to access the article on LATimes.com, but it appears the Lakers are moving in the deadline for season ticket holders to renew for next season.

    If true, do you suppose they think the market will bear it because they put such a great product on the floor this year? I mean, people will probably be clamoring to see Nash play a game or two out of 41 home games next year.

  56. rr:

    “The first sentence is just your opinion, and unless you have inside information about Pau’s family, you have no way of knowing whether the second is true.”

    Here’s a little primer on wealth and social class from wiki:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_class_in_the_United_States

    As you will see, there are commonly agreed upon general parameters about wealth and social class. These come from economists, social scientists and so forth. I was not stating my personal opinion about how much money defines “very wealthy” or “upper middle class.”
    These are not subjective designations in informed conversation. Now if you can make the leap that a two-income family, comprised of a general practitioner and a nursing administrator, fit nicely in the range of upper-middle class earnings given their respective salaries than we can agree that they are not in the “very wealthy” tax bracket are they? Should I find salary figures for those professions in Spain for you? Just to make absolutely sure? Please.

    As far as needing insider information to know whether or not the Gasol family is indifferent about him signing a lesser contract because of their independently wealthy position, well, since they are clearly not independently wealthy (which can be surmised by their professions, and that there are no rumours of a secret family fortune), we can say with a high degree of certainty that this question is meaningless.

    Now you might be right to suggest as you do, that Pau and brother Marc have made enough money that Pau might play for Memphis at a substantial discount. But you are probably wrong because human beings are wired to hoard (lots on this if read human evolutionary biology). In short, you can never have enough. See Kobe and Nash, for a couple of Laker examples.

    I’m a private equity investor and see this all the time in the people I deal with. It’s pretty sad really . . . .

    I

  57. R try clearing your browsing history for the last 4 weeks.

    The Clippers are beginning to look like a desirable alternative until the Lakers get their act together.

  58. I think Kevin Ollie would be a guy to think about as well–he has a lot more NBA exp. than Donovan does, albeit as a player. Donovan has more HC exp.

  59. The Clippers are beginning to look like a desirable alternative until the Lakers get their act together.
    ——————————-

    My thought exactly. Wonder if the Lakers FO has figured this out?

  60. the Lakers are moving their date ahead for season tickets because the league wants them to. they still have the latest date in the league. Plashcke doesn’t have good intentions.

    anyone who jumps to the Clippers will have his just reward. the Clippers couldn’t always be bad anymore than the Lakers could always be good. we’ll see what actually happens in the long run.

  61. And MDA girs and say that Sacre ” has it all”.

  62. R

    You mean you wonder if Time Warner has figured that out?

    Jimbo and family get paid win or lose.

  63. Ko: “Jimbo and family get paid win or lose.”

    ————————————

    We should all be that lucky. :0)

  64. Bryan,

    I said “very well-off” not “very wealthy” which to me are different things, and I did not either say or suggest that Pau’s parents are independently wealthy. I just said that they have some money of their own independent of what the sons have made. The Gasols are upper-middle class. If you don’t consider that “very well-off”, fair enough. I would suggest that is probably largely due to what you do for a living and the types of people with whom you deal professionally, which, since you are a private equity investor, are very different than those in my day-to-day professional experience.

    Also, I made some distinctions between Pau and many other jocks, which may be relevant to this question. Additionally, of course, there are cases of HOF players taking less money for competitive reasons late in their careers:

    Gary Payton
    Karl Malone
    Tim Duncan

    Howard’s money in Houston supposedly will come about the same as it would have here, due to state taxes, but he did take one less guaranteed year to get to a better team. Nowitzki has stated many times that he will be willing to take a hefty pay cut if will help Dallas contend again before he retires. He may or may not do this, of course, when the time comes, but I don’t think that Cuban would give him a max deal in any case. The NBA is, obviously, not a “free market.”

    So, sure, Pau may simply take the biggest deal available. But there are reasons to think that he won’t. Pau has done about everything he can in basketball, except play with his brother in the NBA. And, I think there is a good chance that Pau, like most older players, will want to close out his career on a good team–which does not, at this time, describe the Lakers or some of the other teams to which his name has been linked.

  65. mud – thanks for the clarification