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Six years ago this morning, I clicked on a little button that said publish and started a blog with this sentence:

Welcome to my attempt at keeping personal sanity in the midst of the swirling vortex of controversy that is the Lakers.

As I remember, 25 people read it, and they all found the site on accident stumbling through Blogger. But to this day that idea is sort of what this site remains, save it’s not just for me anymore.

Six years later, it feels all so different. The Lakers aren’t controversial, they are steady and professional (well, maybe professional isn’t the word I’d use to describe last night’s Timberwolves game). My sanity is fully up for debate, but life feels far crazier.

Forum Blue & Gold is different, but the same at its core. It’s not really mine anymore. But it still feels like home.

For those of you a little confused, my name is Troy McClure Kurt Helin, you might remember me from such posts as “Tip Off” and “Forum Blue?” I was the guy who started this little site as a hobby and had no plans for what it would become or how it would change my life. It really was my little attempt to keep some sanity and have some fun. I had gotten married and was watching more Lakers games focused in at home on a television rather than slightly blurry-eyed at a bar. Then I’d wake up the next morning and read the analysis of the game — not the Lakers beat writers, who have always been good, but the columnists — and think, “what were they watching?”

Basically, I was watching Rudy T’s painful inside-out, live-or-die by-the-three offense (which works fine with Hakeem surrounded by shooters but was a dud in LA) then picking up the paper and reading about what Shaq said about Mitch. I didn’t care. I wanted to talk basketball, and if nobody else would, I just would start my own little site. I modeled it after Dodger Thoughts. Maybe some others would find me and we could have a semi-smart conversation that didn’t involve how anybody’s ass tasted. There was no marketing plan or goals, no thoughts of monetization (which wasn’t even a word yet), no thoughts of getting into the business, there was just me writing and chatting with likeminded souls.

To me, that’s always what FB&G was and will be. It’s why it’s still home.

I wasn’t totally alone. The NBA blogsphere was just a handful of us — me, Mike at Knickerblogger, Jeff at Celtics Blog, Matt at Blog-a-Bull, Henry at TrueHoop, a few others — and all of us just doing it for fun. Just because. No corporate entities and no money. Which makes it sound far more idealistic than it was — it wasn’t all puppies and rainbows.

Things change. The site grew. FB&G became part of the TrueHoop Network at ESPN, because I liked and trusted those people. More people found the site and the conversations became more interesting. The goal was always not just growth but growth in a way that fit FB&G. That’s why no message boards, there are great Lakers message boards out there but the feel on those is different. FB&G was always seemed a little more mature and nuanced, it seemed to me.

I’ve got this new(ish) gig, a new home on the Web. But I view that as my Upper West Side place in NYC. Posh and somewhat high profile (that may be overstating it, but I’m stuck with this analogy now). Urban, and both stimulating and isolating the way a great city can be. I work hard to make it home like I remember. But it means I am rarely around the place I grew up on the Web (I read everything but rarely participate).

FB&G is that home, it is coming back to may parents place in Woodland Hills to see the Christmas lights up and smell peanut butter cookies being baked. It’s Lakers fans talking Lakers, but in a sane way. Most of the time. It’s warm and comfortable.

It’s all that more because of all of you than me. I was just the host, but the party is no fun with just a host. It took Scott, Darius, Reed, now Philip and Jeff and Bill Bridges and so many others. It took all of you. FB&G is a gathering spot, a warm and inviting one hopefully. One where we can really enjoy celebrating Lakers wins with friends.

And hopefully this season, we’ll get to celebrate another big one. Thanks for coming by and being part of the fun.

Preview & Chat: The Denver Nuggets

Kurt —  February 5, 2010

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Records: Lakers 38-12 (1st in West) Nuggets 33-16 (2nd in West, 4.5 games back of Lakers)
Offensive points per 100 possessions: Lakers 109.3 (10th in league), Nuggets: 111.6 (3rd in league)
Defensive points per 100 possessions: Lakers 102.2. (2nd in league) Nuggets 106.3 (12th in league)
Projected Starting Lineups: Lakers: Derek Fisher, Kobe Bryant, Ron Artest, Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum
Nuggets: Chancey Billups, Aaron Affalo, Joey Graham, Kenyon Martin, Nene

Are any of the superstars playing tonight? Well, Kobe is for sure, he confirmed it at shoot around this morning. Did you really think he wouldn’t play? (If you played it smart, wouldn’t you play a couple more games then say after Monday night against the Spurs that you can’t keep going, miss the Jazz game on Wednesday but also get to sit out All Star Weekend, giving you a week off? He’s not going to do that, just sayin.)

Carmelo Anthony said it would take a “miracle” for him to play tonight. Still, I would not be surprised to see him in warmups and ready to go. Let me put it this way, if I had ‘Melo on my fantasy team, he’s not back in the starting rotation yet, but you keep your eye out because he will be soon.

What is interesting is the contrast between how these two deal with the injury. Kobe will not be kept off the court. Even if he should be. Carmelo wants to be 100% before he returns (ala Gasol and his hamstring). Really, I don’t think one is better or worse than the other, players should choose what is best for them and their bodies. This is how they make a living. But the approaches are an interesting contrast.

Nuggets coming in: I listened to a pretty honest interview George Karl did on Jim Rome’s radio show earlier this week. Karl was up front that he would love to get one more player via trade, but also realized that his franchise is not going to take on more salary, and that a move is very unlikely.

He also seemed to be sending a message to his team that they can beat the Lakers with what they have come the playoffs. (I’m sure he’s pumping that up a lot right now in practices and meetings.) It’s a confidence thing, Karl has to get this team to believe it can beat the Lakers in a series before it can happen — for all the skills and Xs and Os, the difference between the top teams can be more about confidence than skills. He knows they are close, he knows that Denver is a little better than last year. But getting them to believe they are over the hump will be the challenge.

So what are the Nuggets like without Carmelo Anthony? Well, as you would expect, their offense takes a big hit — they score 5.5 fewer points per game. (Their defense is unaffected.) That’s a problem, as they win games with their offense first, so the Nuggets are 7-4 this season without Melo.

They also have been a bad road team 11-12 away from the Pepsi Center.

Nuggets blogs Roundball Mining Company is filled with smart people.

Keys to game: If there is no Carmelo tonight, then there will be more Billups in the Nuggets offense. That is not necessarily good for the Lakers.

First thing — you have to step out on Billups above the three-point line when he brings it up. Billups and Baron Davis love the pull-up three more than any two guards in the league (in an ESPN Chat, Mr. Clipperblog Kevin Anovitz said the difference is that Billups makes his). Billups is shooting 45.6% from three in the Nuggets last 10 games.

They will also post Billups up or run him off multiple screens to get him open. Defending him does not fall to Fisher (or Farmar or Brown) alone, the team has to defend him.

The other guy the Lakers can’t let get hot is JR Smith — just part of the battle of the benches that will be key tonight. Smith loves the spot up three in transition, but he will put it on the floor and drive if you run at him, so again it is a team defense not just one man. They also run him off a lot of screens (which should look familiar to Afflalo from his UCLA days).

On offense, the last meeting the Nuggets doubled Bynum hard in the post, and that took Bynum out of his game and he did not adjust well. Tonight he needs to react better, the ball needs to come out and swing to the weakside fast.

Where you can watch: 7:30 p.m. start here out west, on ESPN and Fox Sports. Plus, ESPN radio 710am.

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Records: Lakers 37-12 (1st in West) Bobcats 24-23 (6th in East)
Offensive points per 100 possessions: Lakers 109.1 (10th in league), Bobcats 102.4 (25th in league)
Defensive points per 100 possessions: Lakers 102 (2nd in league) Bobcats 102.3 (3rd in league)
Projected Starting Lineups: Lakers: Derek Fisher, Kobe Bryant, Ron Artest, Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum
Bobcats: Raymond Felton, Stephen Jackson, Gerald Wallace, Boris Diaw, Nazir Mohammed

Walton out tonight:His back is bothering him again so he will watch this game from the trainers room.

Bobcats coming in: You’d be making a big mistake thinking “it’s just the Bobcats, the Lakers should blow them out.” First, because the Bobcats always give the Lakers trouble.

And second, because the Bobcats have been a hot team of late. They have won primarily with a very aggressive defense this season — they basically are tied with the Lakers on the season — and have been getting their offense from two sources.

One is Gerald Wallace, who has been playing like an All Star for the last 10 days — averaging 23 points a game on 58.7% (eFG%) shooting and 52% from three. Wallace also is a power on the offensive glass while on the other end he has 15 blocks in the last 10 games.

The other is Stephen Jackson. He has been scoring 22 a game and providing some other scoring punch to the team.

Keys to game: If the Lakers go to their isolation offensive trends of late tonight, they will be in a lot of trouble. Charlotte’s defense will be the problem. Darius adds some details:

Larry Brown has been one of the better coaches at disrupting the Triangle offense over the years. This goes back to the ’04 Finals and has been a recurring theme in any Lakers/team coached by Brown matchup. Mostly he loves to have his players disrupt passing angles by side fronting the post in the hub of the Triangle, denying pass to the corner on the strong side, and then sagging from the weak side to deny the pressure release when we look to swing the ball. This leads to poor timing in our sets and makes our guards over-dribble (which has been a problem this season even without the defense forcing this action). Our guys are really going to have to be crisp with their movement and work to get open. Not to mention the ‘Cats are the #1 team in defensive efficiency this season.

While Darius has the floor, he has a couple other points:

People always mention LeBron, ‘Melo and Pierce as the guys that Ron Artest was brought in to contain. Well, few would put Gerald Wallace in that class (I don’t) but he’s a dangerous player and a guy that can hurt the Lakers. Wallace has an all around game and Ron is going to have his hands full with a guy that will be very active on both ends of the floor. Wallace is playing at an extremely high level this season — proven by his inclusion on the Eastern All-Star team — and Ron is going to need to especially watch him on the glass has Wallace is getting about two off. rebounds a game. On a side note, look at the guys that Ron has been asked to guard lately — LeBron, Pierce, Caron Butler, Iguodala, Granger, Rudy Gay, and now Wallace. And before the All-Star break he’ll likely see plenty of minutes on Richard Jefferson, Brandon Roy, Melo, and AK-47. Wow. No rest for this guy.

Another guy to look out for is Raymond Felton. The forgotten PG of the Deron/CP3 draft class hasn’t quite lived up to the expectations coming out of college, but he’s having a solid year as he seems to finally found his game as a pro. His assists are down, but all of his shooting numbers (except for FT%) are up even though his scoring is down. That tells me he’s playing more under control and not forcing too much. This is like the influence of Larry Brown on his game as Brown is notoriously hard and demanding on PG’s but it looks like Felton is taking to Brown’s tutelage.

Another note about Felton, he comes off the pick with the quickness and strength of only a few in the league. He just explodes. What is challenging for the Lakers is Wallace often sets the high screen and Diaw also comes out by the arc to pull his defender away from the basket. The Lakers need to defend Felton well without getting into foul trouble and keep him out of the paint.

Another key — taking care of the ball. The Bobcats are second in the league in creating turnovers (per possession), jumping passing lanes and using long arms and athleticism to disrupt plays (see Darius’ note). That can fuel their running game, something they don’t do a lot under the controlling Brown but they have the athletes and can get some easy buckets in transition that way. You can’t give them easy buckets — their defense is not going to give you any. It’s how they can score enough to beat you.

Where you can watch: 7:30 p.m. start here out west, on Fox Sports. Plus, ESPN radio 710am.

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Records: Lakers 37-11 (1st in West) Grizzlies 25-21 (10th in West)
Offensive points per 100 possessions: Lakers 109.3 (9th in league), Grizzlies 110 (7th in league)
Defensive points per 100 possessions: Lakers 102 (2nd in league) Grizzlies 110 (25th in league)
Projected Starting Lineups: Lakers: Derek Fisher, Kobe Bryant, Ron Artest, Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum
Grizzlies: Mike Conley, OJ Mayo, Rudy Gay, Zach Randolph, Marc Gasol

Before you do anything else, run to the local church and light a candle for Andrew Bynum’s knees tonight.

Happy Pau Gasol Day. It was two years ago today that the Lakers traded Kwame Brown, Javaris Crittenton, Aaron McKie’s contract and two picks to Memphis for Gasol. Since that day, the Lakers are 142-41 with Gasol in the lineup and have been to the Finals both years, winning once. While that trade is not as lopsided as once thought, is there anyone who would spend more than a second thinking about whether or not to make that trade again?

Lakers Coming In Sunday’s win in Boston may have been the closest thing to a signature win the Lakers have had this year. But the NBA schedule is an unforgiving mistress and now the Lakers have some tough games where they need to show that is not a fluke. Darius put it this way in an email:

I’d really like for the team to build on the momentum that they’ve established on this trip. There was a comment in one of the threads that spoke of our schedule up to the all-star break and there are some doozies still left to play before the rest comes (Memphis, Bobcats, Spurs, Portland, Utah). I’m not saying that the team needs to win all of those, but it would be nice to not be content with a win over the Celtics and get some wins against some other pretty good teams.

What will draw the headlines tonight — Kobe is 29 points away from passing Jerry West as the leading scorer in franchise history. That watch is in full effect tonight.

Grizzlies coming in: This team is good — good enough to be a playoff team in the West and good enough to have won 7 of their last 10. They are not consistent because their defense is not consistent (or is consistently bad), but they have a good offense and on any given night can beat anybody. Last week I caught part of them just outplaying Orlando like it was nothing.

That starts with All Star Zach Randolph. Deserved All Star. Randolph was always one of the best scorers in the game from the left low block, he was almost unstoppable. But he cared not about anything else on the court, or so it seemed. But this year his game has evolved, he has matured as a player. He is shooting a higher percentage than ever in his career, in part because he is getting nearly two more shots per game at the rim than before. He is getting to the foul line more. He is better on the boards (and a much improved offensive rebounder). He’s even playing some defense.

Combine that with the good Marc Gasol in the post and the athletic Rudy Gay at the three, and you have an athletic front line.

Grizzlies blogs Three Shades of Blue is quality

If you read one thing today, read this from Kelly Dwyer. (Well, technically it would have to be two things since you read this.) The man is a legend for a reason.

Keys to game: This is a brutal back-to-back for the Lakers — the emotional high and physical game in Boston, followed up by a lot of travel to take on a team that can score a lot of points and has some quality athletes. On the last game of the road trip. If the Lakers come out flat, they will get run right out of the building.

One thing Memphis has that Lakers fans wish they saw more of was two big men playing well off each other. The Laker defender of the big on the weakside has to be aware, they run little flash in plays near the hoop that are precise. The Lakers bigs need to be mentally ready to be physical again tonight.

The Grizzlies guards can get a little shot happy and not feed the bigs, and they will pretty quickly break out of their offensive sets to run isolation plays. They get away with it because Mayo and Gay are great athletes, but the Lakers can stymie them with good help defense and talking on the court.

Offensively, the Lakers should score plenty against a not very good defensive team if they run their offense and not settle for the first available jumper. Also, this is a battle of PGs who have not played great defense of late, if one of them can take advantage of this it will be a big plus.

Where you can watch: 5 pm start on Channel 9 in LA. Plus, ESPN radio 710am.

Preview & Chat: The Boston Celtics

Kurt —  January 31, 2010

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Records: Lakers 36-11 (1st in West) Celtics 29-15 (3rd in East)
Offensive points per 100 possessions: Lakers 109.5 (9th in league), Celtics 107.6 (13th in league)
Defensive points per 100 possessions: Lakers 102 (2nd in league) Celtics 101.7 (1st in league)
Projected Starting Lineups: Lakers: Derek Fisher, Kobe Bryant, Ron Artest, Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum
Celtics: Rajon Rondo, Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Kendrick Perkins

Lakers Coming In Today — or more likely Monday in Memphis — Kobe will become the Lakers all time leading scorer. He goes into this game 47 points short of Jerry West.

Here’s a note from the ESPN’s statistical research gurus (who rock):: Kobe shot 49.1% before the finger injury, 44% since, and he is taking two more shots per game since.

Celtics coming in: Check out yesterday’s post, an interview with Zach Lowe or Celtics Hub, or check out the roundtable we all were part of over at Land O’Lakers. But know that all those

Here’s another fun note from the ESPN’s statistical research gurus: KG is essentially the Pau Gasol of the Lakers in that their record with and without him is dramatically different. Without, 5-6, with they are 24-9.

Celtics blogs The Celitcs are loaded with good blogs. Jeff and Celtics Blog remain the OG and one of the best ever. You’ve met Zach from Celtics Hub. But checkout their links, there are a lot.

Keys to game: With just about every game, we say the Lakers need to exploit their advantage in the paint. Today’s game will be won in the paint as well, but for a different reason — the Celtics can match the Lakers in the paint. Gasol and Bynum got pushed around by Cleveland, the Celtics will do the same thing. Bynum needs to stay out of foul trouble and protect the rim like Perkins will. Gasol has to match what KG will bring. The front lines will be where this game is won and lost.

The Lakers can’t be passive, they have to go at those guys. Run the offense inside out. That said, the Celtics shut down isolation, one-on-one offense better than any team in the league, because it’s not really one-on-one — three players at any time three guys have responsibility for stopping the ball. They anticipate where the ball is going to go better than any team is out there. The Lakers have to counter that with passes and cuts out of the triangle offense.

Basically, the isolation offense that the Lakers resort to too much this season is going to cost them this game, but if they run the triangle offense and move the ball they will get good looks. Facilitator Kobe most make an appearance.
Where you can watch: 12:30 start on ABC. Plus, ESPN radio 710am out West.

What Is Up With The Celtics?

Kurt —  January 30, 2010

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Oh sure, it’s easy to hate the Celitcs, that’s just an instinct of Lakers fans. But, one is better off when one knows ones enemy.

So, Zach Lowe from Celtics Hub and I have been busy. We teamed up with the Amazing Flying Kamentezky Brothers for a roundtable over at Land O’ Lakers you should check out.

Zach also answered a few questions for us (all before the Celtics lost to the Hawks again last night, the Cs are now 1-6 against Atlanta and Orlando this season).

1) Through the injuries and everything else, the Celtics defense looks like it is back to near (or at least on the path to) where it was a couple years ago. Is that accurate, or does it have a way to go?

That’s basically accurate. The C’s lead the league in defensive efficiency (points allowed per possession), just a hair ahead of the Lakers. They defend the rim and the three-point shot very well; only Orlando allows a lower shooting percentage on shots near the rim (via, and only three teams allow a lower three-point shooting percentage.

That said, the defense isn’t as consistent as it was in 2008 or the start of last season, mostly because the team has gone from an elite defensive rebounding club to an average one. Other than health, this is the biggest internal threat the team faces going forward.

How healthy is Kevin Garnett? Is he expected to be 100% for the playoffs?

Nobody knows. KG hyper-extended his right knee, and the team insists that injury is unrelated to the bone spur and strained tendon in the same knee that kept him out of the playoffs last season. Just as you’ve stopped trying to understand what Phil Jackson might be thinking, I’ve stopped trying to parse out the truth about KG’s health, because I’m not sure anyone really knows–including the team. He labored against the Magic on Thursday, and then—on the second end of a back-to-back—put up 15-7-3 against Atlanta and generally looked decent.

He has to play himself back into game shape, but to do that, he has to avoid the nagging injuries that seem to strike every three weeks.

I should also note that a lot of Boston fans feel burned by the team after it failed to disclose the bone spur issue until well after the playoffs last summer. I personally don’t feel that way–it’s not in the team’s interest to be fully transparent about an injury KG might have been able to play through. But there is some distrust among the fan base, for sure.

How is Sheed working out? Is he fitting in the offense?

Sheed is working out exactly as I expected–he alternates between games in which he appears to be exactly what Boston needs off the bench and games in which he looks creaky and old. To his credit, he has dialed back the three-point shooting a bit; he’s jacking 7.4 threes per 36 minutes, the most on the team by far, but after 15 games or so that number was up at about 11—a number even Antoine Walker never sniffed. He remains (at times) devastating from the post, so you’d always like to see him park his (fat) butt down there more often, especially since he’s shooting 29 percent from deep.

But his presence on the perimeter does open up the floor for everyone else, especially Rondo. The plus/minus numbers indicate that the C’s offense has performed about as well as normal with Sheed on the floor, but that the defense has suffered. This isn’t surprising. Sheed struggles against quicker bigs and has had problems protecting the defensive glass.

Ray Allen’s numbers are off, both from three point range but also in the midrange shots. What are the theories as to the cause? Is there a Rondo effect at play (with him taking a larger role in the offense)?

The main theory is that Ray Allen is just getting old as a player. He’s the oldest of the C’s three 30-plus stars, and he has reached the age (34) at which shooting guards begin to see their accuracy drop. Ray keeps himself in great shape, eats well, etc., so he should hold up better than most.

I don’t think this has anything to do with Rondo taking a larger share of the offense. Rajon and Ray have a nice connection, and Rajon goes out of his way to find Ray for open threes in transition. Ray just isn’t making shots at the same rate. That’s really it. Even so, he continues to put up monster plus/minus numbers, both raw and adjusted, and the second unit plays much better with Ray as the lone starter than with Pierce in that role. That trend has been consistent since Ray got here, suggesting he adds something that is tough to quantify.

How much of creation of shots in the offense falls to Rondo now (both for himself and others)? Is that good?

More than ever. Rondo is taking 11.3 shots per game this season, up from about 9.5 last season, and his assist rate (the percentage of teammate baskets Rajon assists on while on the floor) is the third-highest in the league. It’s a good and necessary development. When Kevin Garnett is injured, the C’s lose one huge piece of their offensive foundation: the ability to run plays through KG in the post. More of the burden naturally falls on Rondo. As KG, Pierce and Allen all age, having someone else to lean on helps keep the offense moving.

The C’s offense has dropped off this season (all the way to 13th in efficiency), but that has less to do with Rajon than with the absence of KG, the tough season Ray Allen is having and the team’s overall drop in three-point accuracy (hello, Sheed).

What is with all the turnovers?

The Celtics have been turnover prone in each of the last three seasons, so it’s not shocking to see them ranked 29th in turnover rate. (They were 29th in each of the last two seasons). It remains amazing to me that a team that pays such maniacal attention to detail on defense can be so sloppy on offense. Rajon Rondo and Kendrick Perkins are the main culprits. Rondo’s turnovers I (mostly) don’t mind, since he’s the point guard and his assist-to-turnover ratio remains one of the best in the league. But Perk commits far too many traveling violations and gets called for illegal screens at least once a game, it seems. That needs to stop. And Rondo has gotten into a bad habit lately of going for Brett Favre-esque passes in transition.

How much does this game matter to the team and fans?

These games always matter a little more. I think fans of these two clubs understand–perhaps more than any other fan bases–that regular-season games don’t matter all that much in the scheme of things. We’re not going to remember in 2015 who won the regular-season series in 2010, unless the same team wins by 30 in each game or something. But it’s the Lakers, there are some minor bragging rights involved and the games always feel special because there are only two of them each season and they are on national TV.

The C’s could also use a win against a quality team after losing back-to-back roadies against the Magic and Hawks. So this game means something extra in that sense, though it would hold that same importance if the C’s were hosting, say, the Cavs.

And now the end is near
And so I face the final curtain
My friend I’ll say it clear
I’ll state my case of which I’m certain

I’ve lived a life that’s full
I traveled each and every highway
And more, much more than this
I did it my way

I, Kurt Helin, am about to leave Forum Blue & Gold.

I tried about 256 ways to phrase that first sentence, but sometimes being direct is the best approach. Know first and foremost — this is a good thing for me and a good thing for the future of the site.

It’s good for me because I have been hired full time to start and write a new NBA blog for Not just Lakers but the entire league, and in a format that is proven to work (if done right). I feel like someone who got the call to head up to the majors — excited and a little bit nervous. But, like Nuke LaLoosh, I’ve practiced my cliches and learned to throw a punch with my non-typing hand (?) so I’m ready to go. You’ll hear and find out more about the blog when it launches on Feb. 8. But know that I am not disappearing, I will still be reading this site every day (and throwing in comments now and again).

The new blog is going to take up virtually all of my time, I couldn’t stay on here and do it right (plus, NBC doesn’t want me working for ESPN on the side anyway). After five years of building Forum Blue & Gold and living on this site every day, one thing I had to do was find the right person to take over the helm.

That is Darius.

The great basketball mind and long time amazing contributor to this site has agreed to step up and be the man. I couldn’t be happier, because I know he is going to do a great job and make this site even better, to help it evolve. I’ll let him talk about his own plans and goals, but I sort of picture him as Bono out in front of the band (and when I do that I’m picturing 1985, mullet and fur boots at Live Aid Bono).

But he wants more band members. That is where writers out there can come in.

Maybe you’re a master narrator who can compose a recap for the ages for even the most lopsided blowout. Or you might be a breakdown artist who loves dissecting the x’s & o’s. Or Are you a stat geek who wants to use all these cool advanced analytics to figure out what’s ailing the Lakers’ offense? A humorist who can tackle the most profound questions facing the team with gallows humor? Or you could be someone who just wants to add thoughtful observations to our community.

Send whatever you think we need to see (links, writing samples, proposals, references, errata) to And remember, I’ll be reading.

Time to start getting fired up for Sunday.