It’s been a while since I put together some fast break thoughts, so now that the league is in full swing here we go…
- There’s an old saying that “there’s only one basketball” and lately we’ve been arguing over who should have it the most. But while us fans are worried about Kobe vs. Bynum vs. Pau, it’s again time to give Mitch Kupchak credit. Whatever you think of the Odom trade, that move has allowed Bynum the minutes and touches he needs to grow. The domino of that trade is that LA needed back up bigs and Mitch signed two guys in McRoberts and Murphy that are both low usage players that move the ball to the open man more often than not. So, in the end, LA has a deeper team with guys that compliment the core group. Things aren’t perfect by any means, but considering LA’s resources and the types of players they needed to fit this team, they’ve done well for themselves with these acquisitions.
- Speaking of Odom, his stint in Dallas has been awful so far. As one of my favorite players in the league, I hope he finds his stride soon. In the games that I’ve seen, he seems completely out of sorts and often just stands in the corner on offense. If I was Dallas, I may try to use him more as an offensive initiator when on the floor with Terry and/or Roddy B as those guys are scorers that could use a set up man. Then again, running an O means knowing an O and with the short time Odom has been in Dallas, he may not be up to speed yet.
- The injuries are starting to strike. We saw this ourselves last night when Courtney Lee fell down grabbing his leg as if his achilles blew out. Luckily for him it’s only a calf strain, but that was scary stuff. In bigger news though, Zach Randolph is out two months with a torn MCL while Manu Ginobili is out 6-8 weeks with a broken bone in his shooting hand. Both the Spurs and Grizz were playoff teams last year and in a shortened season where depth is so important, both teams have to be sweating a bit that top players will be out for so long.
- This is a couple weeks old, but go watch Kobe pump and freeze fake guys to death.
- Andrew Bynum being at the top of the PER food chain was nice while it lasted. He’s now behind LeBron and Manu, and his numbers will likely normalize soon and drop below the mythical 30 level. However, one place where he is still on top is in total rebound rate where his 29.3 is a full 5.5 points higher than 2nd place Dwight Howard. Don’t get me wrong, I love PER as an all encompassing stat but if big Drew can be the best rate rebounder in the league, I’ll happily take it and not think twice about where his PER is.
- The Lakers don’t play the Heat for a while but file this away for when they do: Zone defenses have given them trouble so far this year. It sure would be nice if LA had a zone to pull out from their sleeve. Wait, what’s that you say?
- I don’t know about you, but watching this in slow motion gave me a greater appreciation for Bynum’s athleticisim. This was not an easy shot:
- Lastly this is a very good read from Eric Pincus on Mike Brown and his coaching style when dealing with Kobe Bryant. Give it a look.