The Lakers Summer League team wrapped up their stint in Las Vegas over the weekend, and despite their 1-4 record, the team displayed notable flashes of a potentially prosperous future for the purple and gold. Now, fans understandably remain restless about the team’s disappointing performance and with that, Silver Screen & Roll’s Harrison Faigen provided perspective on their struggles (Hint: It’s OK):
They may have a fire to win and improve that goes beyond their years, but Russell is just a 19-year-old rookie that still wants to use a Gatorade bottle as a microphone to ask questions to Clarkson in a post-win media scrum. Randle is basically a rookie after barely playing more than 10 regular season minutes last year. Clarkson is 23, but is only a year removed from being the 46th overall pick in the NBA draft. While this core may have plenty of promise, the reality is they require some patience while they grow.
Madsen was quick to blame the team’s sluggish start against New York on it being a “mistake” to give the team a day off on Sunday. He may be right, but just as responsible was the Princeton offense the team was attempting to quickly implement and run to effectiveness despite very little practice time. The fact that grind-out halfcourt possessions is pretty much the opposite of what this team’s strengths should be only made it harder to witness.
In the interest of Summer League, the team’s most consistent performer was, without question, Jordan Clarkson. Last week, we recommended a piece that focused on his transition into a combo-guard role for the upcoming season (which you can read here). Now to continue with the theme of his development, Sports Illustrated’s Rob Mahoney detailed how Clarkson’s proficiency as a midrange shooter is bucking a trend of the new, long distance-oriented NBA:
Lakers guard Jordan Clarkson has a counterpoint game. While the broader trends of the league encourage guards to drive headlong to the rim or launch up three-pointers at will, Clarkson has carved out an immediate, intentional niche from midrange. In doing so, the 23-year-old works as something of an exploit. Modern NBA defenses are built to take away specific kinds of shots. Clarkson operates in a way that mines that give and take, stepping into the wide open midrange shots that many defenses naturally concede.
“It’s all two points,” Clarkson said. “Getting there and getting to those spots is definitely an emphasis because I think they’re easy shots for me.”
The majority of NBA teams now guard pick-and-rolls with some variation of a “drop” scheme—in which the big man defending the screener hangs back around the foul line—specifically because the midrange pull-up is a hard shot to hit consistently. It can be rushed. It can be crowded. By default it returns fewer points per possession than a three-point jumper or an attempt from the restricted area, which is why those spaces on the floor are now defensive priorities.
For more on Clarkson and how he is aiming to build upon his success last season, Mark Medina of the Daily News took an in-depth look at Clarkson’s growth from last year’s draft up to this year’s showing in Vegas. The piece details a few specific measures Clarkson is taking to improve upon each aspect of his game, and yes, that includes expanding his range:
DiFrancesco said Clarkson has added 10 to 15 pounds in muscle, increasing his weight from 180 to between 190-195 pounds. Clarkson has completed various strength exercises two days a week, including chin-ups, bench presses, squats, dead lifts and band resistance drills, and focuses two other days on leg exercises.
The Lakers believe this will make Clarkson more equipped to defend stronger guards, finish with more efficiency and minimize injury to any tendons.
Meanwhile, Clarkson narrowed his focus with Hanlen on three things nearly every day.
To improve his outside shooting, Clarkson altered his balance by jumping straight up and tweaked his release point by raising his right elbow.
To improve his pick-and-roll execution, Clarkson has dropped his hips and relaxed his chest so that he can move at a more methodical and efficient pace.
To improve his finishing at the rim, Clarkson has varied his attempts with both hands.
If interested in more on Clarkson’s background, work ethic, the pre-draft process and his honest perspective on last season, the above pieces certainly deserve a read.
One player who has consistently fallen below the radar since (and even prior to) the draft is Lakers’ second-round pick Anthony Brown. For some interesting notes on Brown’s upbringing and early challenges, Bill Oram of the OC Register recently profiled the So Cal native. Among the interesting tidbits, perhaps most heartwarming was the detailed scene of Brown’s home come draft night:
Imagine the scene at the Brown family home on draft night: Some high school friends were there, as was Brown’s girlfriend and his trainer. They sat and watched the broadcast, waiting and hoping.
Shortly before the Lakers picked 34th, someone asked, “Where’s Anthony?”
Brown walked into the living room with his phone pressed to his ear, talking to his agent, just as Mark Tatum, the NBA’s deputy commissioner, announced his name.
“His friends jumped up,” Quentin Brown said. “We all screamed.”
Some of Brown’s friends sprinted around the block.
They rewound the DVR to watch it again.
Lastly, with the 2015 free agency crop now dwindled down to fringe roster players and potential bargain buys, now is the time to look ahead to the summer of 2016. Former Nets executive Bobby Marks recently did just that in a piece examining the upcoming summer from a salary perspective and which teams will benefit from the rising cap:
There has been lots of talk and excitement about the vastly increased salary cap numbers that will come from the new TV deal. Early projections anticipate the current salary cap of $70 million to jump to $89 million for the 2016-17 season. There is the potential for 24 out of 30 teams looking to have an estimated $825 million in cap space. Many fans are wide-eyed by the idea of their favorite team having “lots of cap space” for the summer of 2016. After all, LeBron James and Kevin Durant are free agents next year.
Yet when you look closer… Beyond these two All-Stars, what is the talent level available? Will there be enough true talent for teams to spend at least $81 million?
That is the number teams need to spend to hit the minimum 90 percent of the salary cap. Will the summer of 2016 be the year of one-year contracts because of the lack of overall talent and depth?
Those closing questions certainly apply to the Lakers going forward, and there are plenty more yet to be answered as the team outwardly prepares for this season. With Kobe coming off the books after this year and no other major long-term commitments, how does the team manage to fulfill that 90 percent minimum with reasonable signings? If they once again miss out on the marquee free agents — which, as Marks points out, are followed by a significant drop in talent — will their contingency plan suffice the “three-year plan”?
It is never too early to look towards next summer, especially from a management perspective, as the landscape of the league will be dramatically shifted after 2016. As fans, we naturally hope that the Lakers emerge from the summer in good condition.
From the previous thread:
@ Craig W. regarding Nance playing the Three:
Per DraftExpress on Larry Nance, Jr:
Height w/o shoes: 6′ 7.5″
Height w/ shoes: 6′ 8.5″
Wingspan: 7′ 1.5″
Standing Reach: 9″ 0″
It’s not impossible for Nance to play the Three. I think he would be a very good wing defender with above average reach. He’s arguably an average size for the current NBA small forward — per a Hoops Obsession survey:
Small Forwards: Average size was 6’8″, 224 lbs. Smallest starter was 6’5″, and tallest was 6’10”. The lowest weight was 195 lbs., and the heaviest was 260 lbs.
Craig W. says
Yes, he has the physical statistics to play 3. However his game seems to be more ‘bully ball’, rebounding and offside shot blocking. Those are not generally things you want in your 3 and A. Brown would be more likely to fit there. However, in a small ball situation I think he would be a terror with Randle and Black occupying the other front-court spots – they would simply dominate other smaller front courts. However, all that is not likely to play-out until later in the season.
The good thing is that he and A. Brown were seniors and should take less time to adjust to the NBA.
The unique thing about Nance is his wingspan. He has a lower center-of-gravity (see people like Charles Barkley), but can reach to guard taller PFs. This is where he has an advantage over Randle.
From the ESPN article cited above:
1) Jeanie explaining the circumstances surrounding that timeline:
“Well, I asked my brother, how long until we’re back into contention? And when I say ‘contention,’ that means past the second round, so either the Western Conference finals or the NBA Finals,” she said. “And he told me that it would take three years to rebuild it. So we’ve just finished Year 1 of that three-year [plan]. So we have two more years until he feels that we’ll be back into going past the second round in the playoffs.”
2) Would she actually pull the trigger?:
“Yeah, absolutely,” Buss said. “This is my job. I’m part-owner of the team, but I’m also the president. The Buss family is the majority owner but we have other partners as well who are also shareholders, and I have an obligation to them. Would I make those changes? Yes. My brother understands that we have to continue to strive for greatness, and I think he would be the first one to feel that he would need to step down if he can’t get us to that point.”
The Lakers’ draft pick is only top three protected. the odds of keeping it are long. Plus, if you read the Bobby Marks article, also cited above, you sense that there isn’t much talent to be had next summer beyond KD (who isn’t coming).
So heading into year Three of Jim’s timeline the Lakers will have to rely upon organic growth and improvements to the edges of the roster in order to make the Western Conference Finals or the NBA Finals (to save Jim’s job).
Seriously, the ‘Jim Buss Termination Watch’ is going to be more entertaining and garner more interest that the product on the floor.
The Lakers seem finally to have, perhaps reluctantly, committed themselves to a true rebuilding program with at least one budding talent in Clarkston. Hopefully, we’ve seen the last scorched earth year in which almost all of the previous year’s players are released, leaving almost all of the current players in their first year as Lakers. We can look to the completed playoffs to find former Lakers in key assignments–Lakers that could have been here: Ariza, Barnes, Gasol. Three veteran players from last year, Lin, Hill, and Boozer would probably have returned for less than their replacements, Hibbert, Williams, and Bass–who could well be jettisoned for the next three next year–to allow Jimmy to try to keep his promise of taking the Lakers far into the playoffs. The few players that we do have coming back are not the key players I’d hope for; it appears that all of them are potential trade targets.
I believe that Byron Scott is the right guy to try and pull off a miracle with this nucleus–but not in one year. I’d consider it remarkable if the Lakers win more than 30 games next year, and wouldn’t be so discouraged with 21 if one could see some of the combinations jelling. If we need to find 5 next year, instead of 10, to fit well defined slots, I’d consider it the best clear positive sign in about five years.
But I’m not holding my breath. We probably are facing more scorched earth even with a realistic 30 wins, with Byron long gone–if he even survives the season. True rebuilding would once again be delayed another year.
Jim’s timeline is an unfortunate distraction to the matter at hand: rebuilding the team. I think the media will lay low on it until later this season and jump into it big time this next summer. The media loves blood in the water and this Jim Buss thing is likely going to be just that.
Let’s be honest, the team is likely to improve in increments over time — there won’t be one summer of fixes that lead to the tangible improvements that Jim has promised. While not a fan of Jim, I don’t think this timeline issue is good for business.
I think Jeanie either has to let Jim off the hook or reassign him in the organization so that the timeline is moot. I know Jeanie is looking for results but those expectations should be within the context of what is in the best long term interest of the team. Holding Jim to the timeline invites desperate moves that could have long lasting negative impact on the franchise. Jeanie should understand this.
We are at the beginning of a massive rebuild process. To think we can go from where the Lakers are right now to the NBA Finals in two years is not realistic.
Does Jim really need to be fired for Nash getting hurt, misreading the tea leaves on Howard, and hiring D’antoni? And do we really need some completely arbitrary deadline hanging over Jims head? I don’t understand the plus side on any of that. If we have a top 4 team in the west two years from now that will be a miracle, and that would still get Jim fired? And how can she even fire him? Do we really need another team here with a family power play in the courts?
I think Jeanie should not have spoken publicly about firing Jim. I’m fine with the time table but why tell the media? The media love these kind of stories, especially when it pertains to the Lakers. Jeanie showed an incredible lack of judgment and if we want Jim to go, we should want Jeanie to go too.
I believe Lakers have close to no chance with getting Durant. We should be focusing on rebuilding and developing our rookies. I know people hate tanking, so how about trading players like what Lakers did to get Pau? Continue gathering assets and flip them at the right opportunity.
And do we really need some completely arbitrary deadline hanging over Jims head?
No, but he put it out there himself, and said in public, to the LA Times, that he will step down voluntarily if the team doesn’t meet the competitive benchmarks within the specified timeframe. As to the other questions, Jim would presumably still be involved with, and benefit financially from, the Lakers. He just wouldn’t be running basketball ops.
I agree ryan. For some DUMB reason, DUMB Laker fans want to fire Jim Buss. Jeanne Buss is the one that gave Kobe the contract (well deserved btw). Jerry Buss on his deathbed asked to have Mike D’antoni hired. Mitch Kupchak and Jim Buss are doing a good job. They are still a top 5 management in the league. Firing people does not help the situation in most cases, these people are professionals with decades of experience and recently won back to back championship less than 5 years ago. Let them do there job and stop wanting to “FIRE” people.
No Name says
Jim’s an owner in a family business. He didn’t have to give himself a deadline. He could have milked this gig until the cows came home and there was nothing anyone could have done about it. So by all accounts Jim’s promise was either an incredible gesture based in supreme confidence or a miscalculation driven by hubris.
By going public he has in fact put a bulls-eye on his baseball cap. I don’t think that Jeanie can afford to save him as Jim has given her and the organization a needed scapegoat — how else does she explain the mess Lakers basketball has become.
An interesting note about this. Jim is more comfortable out of the limelight so he’s not seeking interviews or even quoted in them. So its not Jim that keeps bringing this timeline up — it’s Jeannie. It’s as if she wants everyone to know that the on court issues are not her doing and if anyone’s butt is on the line it’s not hers.
@ sufian: Jeanne Buss is the one that gave Kobe the contract (well deserved btw). Jerry Buss on his deathbed asked to have Mike D’antoni hired. …Mitch Kupchak and Jim Buss are doing a good job. They are still a top 5 management in the league.
Jim is the executive vice president of basketball operations for the Los Angeles Lakers. The buck stops with him.
Some thoughts about the Jim Buss FO —the following 2014/15 season rankings were developed by ESPN and fivethirtyeight:
– Best Owner Rankings: Lakers 24th out of 30
– Best GM Rankings: Lakers 26th out of 30
– Best Coaches Rankings: Lakers 29th out of 30
– Overall FO Rankings: Lakers 28th out of 30
– Likelihood to win a championship by 2019: Lakers 27th out of 30
– Leveraging Analytics: 1 of 3 non-believers in the league
We all have high praises of Jordan Clarkson performance last season as a 2nd round draft pick, in a few months, he enters a new challenge of 2nd season. Sometimes in NBA, a player blossoms from nowhere like Linsanity because nobody really minded them, there is no name recognition from the league so they were free to roam. This is similar to Clarkson, he is now fully scouted and most probably coaches and PG’s have studied his move, so whatever his great accomplishments in the 2nd half wherein Lakers were treated as a garbage team may not reflect the same treatment of Clarkson in a new season. He would be defended from the perimeter and his favorite jump shots would also be anticipated. Basically, that is reason why analytics is not a good measurement in tracking a player at all times, he may shone on one season because he is the only offense of the Lakers so his performance is above par. On the 2nd season, he is marked man running with the hungry wolves. If he defies the odds, that’s the take off of a true Superstar like Lilliard, Curry, Wall who continued their upside despite the attention.
With regards to 3 year challenge of Jim Buss given to himself and honored by a President Sister, I find this another distraction of the dysfunctional family.
If they value this team badly, they should turnover the nitty gritty management to the professionals and step out as good stewards of the flock. Right now, they are being judged year after year to expectations based on the accomplishment of their illustrious Dad. It is hard to duplicate that feat who was a visionary owner, Jerry Buss used the resources of great basketball minds that propel his team to prominence. If they hand over the management of the franchise to a group of professionals whether corporation or individuals, they can always terminate the contract if results are below par. Lakers image is not tied to the Buss Family alone and the net worth of the franchise is not personalized.
OK Jim Buss can be fired in two year’s time, who will fire Jeanie Buss in the next episode of the on-going drama?
I believe there will be a “nice” (some will like it, some won’t) trade sometime this year. Something needs to happen in order to be able to lure a key free agent in 2016 or 2017.
@No Name: An interesting note about this. Jim is more comfortable out of the limelight so he’s not seeking interviews or even quoted in them. So its not Jim that keeps bringing this timeline up — it’s Jeannie. It’s as if she wants everyone to know that the on court issues are not her doing and if anyone’s butt is on the line it’s not hers.
I think there’s a little sibling rivalry going on here. What’s unfortunate is that it is spilling out into the public’s view.
COLD WELCOME FOR KOBE’S NEW TEAMMATES
At today’s introductory news conference, new Lakers additions Roy Hibbert, Brandon Bass and Lou Williams were left speechless when asked if they have heard from Kobe Bryant since joining the team. Awkward!
Craig W. says
IMO – talking about signing a key free-agent next year is rubbish. We are creating probable failure by talking about it and setting up an expectation. Mostly it is us fans. I agree with the posters above who say we need to put this thought behind us and concentrate on developing players, plus creating trade possibilities.
Wow – are you guys still talking about the FO?
Ryan:”Do we really need another team here with a family power play in the courts?” Probably not – so are you suggesting they just sell the team?
George: “Jeanie either has to let Jim off the hook or reassign him” Aren’t you forgetting Option C?
kbj: if we want Jim to go, we should want Jeanie to go too.” And we do. However we may have to be satisfied with one out of two in the short run.
Kevin: “Seriously, the ‘Jim Buss Termination Watch’ is going to be more entertaining and garner more interest that the product on the floor.” Well – while I agree – it is not that entertaining. I have been waiting for this termination for years.
agree ryan. For some DUMB reason, DUMB Laker fans want to fire Jim Buss
Let me guess–you are a regular at another well-known Lakers site . Like I said a few days ago, FO defenders have to post stuff like this because they don’t have a very good case. That is why we see FO defenders often being confrontational/negative about fans, the media etc. A lot of the facts don’t work well for them.
No one uses the deathbed defense here, but let me explain to you why it’s lame:
1. We only have Jim’s word for it.
2. Even if it is true, it was foolish of Jim to publicly put a decision that didn’t work out very well on his dying father. Jeanie has made her resentment of this obvious in interviews. Leaders take responsibility in public. One of the key parts of the gig.
I’m fine with the time table but why tell the media?
Jim was the one who told the media.
Mostly it is us fans
It is fans talking about Durant, yes. And people do need to forget about that–Durant is not coming here. But the whole FA-reload scenario was originally floated and has been perpetuated by Jim Buss and Mitch Kupchak. So if that bothers you, you should be telling them, not us, especially if you want less FO-focused conversation.
Oh, Kendall Marshall is a free agent. Put him next to D-Russ. Passing porn.
So it’s the fans fault the Lakers are terrible? Those people who have been stuffing money in the Buss family’s pockets? Hahaha.
‘Cmon, hard to take that line of argument seriously. Well, sometimes it is hard to pick up on sarcasm out here in cyberspace. In cyberspace, no one can see you smirk.
Anyway, any news on Upshaw?
Jim Buss only promised a team that was a “contender”. he didn’t promise the finals….
i’m fine with ownership. i’m fine with Jeanie and her comments. i’m fine with Jim’s stupid hat.
right now, all i need to see is a healthy team for a full season. i’ll bet that makes a tremendous difference.
the fans should be fine.
here’s news for spoiled children, you weren’t promised anything. you haven’t lost anything. if you get bored, you can quit. if the team is so mismanaged that no one cares, it will disappear. life will go on in any case.
personally, i’d like to see the team get off of the schneid, of course.
“I was laying myself on the line by saying, if this doesn’t work in three to four years, if we’re not back on the top — and the definition of top means contending for the Western Conference, contending for a championship — then I will step down because that means I have failed,” he told The Times about the meeting. “I don’t know if you can fire yourself if you own the team … but what I would say is I’d walk away and you guys figure out who’s going to run basketball operations because I obviously couldn’t do the job.”
Whenever I see an interview with Jeanie she strikes me as somewhat out of touch with reality. Nobody can fire her, though.
as i wrote, he only said contending.
News on upshaw is tjat they dont expect him to play this year and they might be looking for another big to add to the roster ….seraphin on a min contract could be good
KoBEST Report says
Mitch kupchak is a great gm, he is running the show and i believe Jim agrees with Mitch in most of the decisions. Some fans are morons who expect the Lakers to never have down years and want to fire the gm who just won a championship. Go ahead and get your pitch forks out (mob mentality),even though it won’t solve a thing, you’ll feel better because of your own ignorance.
For the most part it’s projection. Jim is not a very communicative guy, and in most cases nobody really knows how his decisions have shaped anything the Lakers have done. But people keep looking for scapegoats and quick fixes. And tend to rely on a lot of hindsight analysis.
Unless someone knows what’s going on behind the scenes there’s no way to tell if firing Jim would really help turn things around. And I would assume that most people who are vocal about this subject are not insiders.
Upshaw being the odd man out is a bit of a let-down. Hopefully it will all pan out and he will be signed with us. I am curious to know what kinds of offers the FO have been dangling to other teams, as of which players they are trying to move.
There was a nice article about Upshaw here:
Warren Wee Lim says
Per Eric Pincus, Jordan Clarkson is not eligible for an extension. Since he was a 2-yr-deal 2nd round pick, his contract expires at the end of this year and he becomes a restricted free agent.
Because he is a 2nd rounder, he isn’t bound by any contractual rules. For all we care, other teams can offer him a poison pill contract like that of Jeremy Lin, Omer Asik and Landry Fields to pry him out of our team. I guess the only difference is that we’d match “any” offer.
For the same reason, we can also lock him up with a long-term reasonable contract. Remember he’s only 23, was all-rookie 1st team last year and looked good in several games during summer league. Of course that summer league stint means nothing if he cannot translate it into the big league. However, its also an indicator that his more muscular frame better body tone means that he’s been taking care of himself.
How much would be a good offer to retain him? The bloated NBA contracts have just begun, how would you feel if he asked for max? Still good?
Headline: Kobe’s awkward silence to the FA’s
Is that a news or baiting for readership? Kobe is a retiring player and currently on injured list, why would he interfere with GM press day for FA’s?
FO asked him to come during the LaA meeting and was asked by Aldridge, he spoke what he’s in his mind, Aldridge didn’t like what was said, now it’s Kobe’s fault why FA’s were turned-off?
Therefore, as a future retiree, just follow what the three monkeys said: “Speak no evil, hear no evil, and say no evil’.
Watched Wms, Hibbert and Bass not respond to the Kobe contact question. No class, Kobe. You’ll make meetings to lure LMA, but not text a greeting to guys coming to help your team? Only acceptable excuses: kidnapped or coma. Where’s your head? Where’s your heart?
Mitch’s comments about Upshaw sound like classic shot-across-the-bow material. Probably his agent is angling for more — at least, perhaps, more guaranteed $, and Mitch is reminding him that he has no leverage, that he sees Upshaw as a D-Leaguer this year. Which is probably right.
That said, it would be a shame to let Upshaw get away because of a little guaranteed money. Pennywise and pound-foolish on the Lakers’ part, especially with dead wood like Sacre taking up a roster spot. But this could also fall through because his agent thinks he’s NBA-ready now and can get a better opportunity somewhere else – both of which I doubt. Wouldn’t be the first time a guy’s agent miscalced, though — see Ariza, Trevor.
The Lakers have lost 116 games these last two years as a result of decisions made by the Jim Buss FO. The FO supporters tend to gloss over the fact that Jim/Mitch didn’t inherit this Lakers mess — they are the ones that created it. To date Jim’s solution of sacrificing each current season to roll forward cap space in the hopes of signing multiple elite free agents to bring the Lakers to competitive status has been a failure.
I think calling Lakers fans morons, when they correctly connect the dots, is a bit hypocritical.
What dots are you connecting? It started rolling down hill after the league came in to say no to the chris paul deal. Than we had 2 injury riddled seasons where majority of our starters were out. yes we have lost 116 games last 2 years, we werent expected to win. They did the smart thing and tanked. The only dots your connecting are hateful opinions, not facts. What would you have done in hindsight? do you want to move the lakers to texas so we can get a tax break?
@sufian: What dots are you connecting?
Life is too short. Agree to disagree here.
You think Jim/Mitch are victims of forces beyond their control. I happen to think differently.
Warren – Clarkson is a max player because he’s half pinoy. #puso
I come by my Lakers honestly–my grandfather (who started guard for HOF Doc Meanwell on Nat’l Champ Wisconsin team in 1913 ) was a Laker fan from the NBL days. He turned me onto them in 1966 when he lived in Pasadena. We lost to Boston in 7 that year. First NBA I ever saw (on TV)—Lakers showed such heart clawing back in the game, such drama in every possession. Been a fan ever since. Last year was a low, but I watched about 35 games. I feel we’re losing our way and a lot has to do with character. By way of example:
Pop quoted in SI on $12 million to keep injured free agent Mills: “It wasn’t even a question. Obviously he can shoot the basketball and has a lot of energy. But he’s beloved on this team for his enthusiasm, his kindness, his understated gravitas.” What I’d like to see of my Lakes. West, where are you?
Do you agree they are more capable of gathering a championship contending team than majority of the nba teams?
sufian: The only dots your connecting are hateful opinions, not facts.
I read this thread and its actually you that is coming across as opinionated and hateful.
You stated that Jim/Mitch were a top 5 management team. Then Kevin refutes it with 6 different assessments from ESPN and fivethirtyeight. At least he used third party sources – where are your facts?
Then you get on George for not stating facts even though he referenced our record (that is a fact my friend) and stating that Jim’s strategy of jump starting the Lakers by signing two elite FAs has not worked (look at our roster – that’s also a fact).
This is a fan site and I don’t think its right to call other people names. There’s only one person that it doesn’t reflect well on: you
Do you agree they are more capable of gathering a championship contending team than majority of the nba teams?
There is nothing to back this up, other than “They did it five years ago” and the league has changed since then, as has the structure/personnel of the FO. Bottom line: Since Jim Buss moved into more of a lead role in 2011, the team has gone straight down and is now at the bottom of the league. That is not all his fault, of course, but it is foolish to pretend that it has nothing to do with him. Also, in your posts about this subject, you have used the terms dumb, ignorant, and hateful. Another poster thinks it’s about “projection.” The reason for that is that you have a very weak case, on the facts, and it is easy to point to moves/would-be moves made by the FO over the last four years that were either obviously a bad idea or very questionable, and in any case, haven’t worked. So, people defending the FO usually need to lash out.
People aren’t upset because Jim wears a baseball cap or because he doesn’t talk to the press or because he and Jeanie squabble a little in public. If the Lakers were still on top, the baseball cap would be an endearing eccentricity and the squabbling would be “colorful.” They are upset because the team is really bad, and the FO has made a series bad and questionable decisions that have not moved the team forward. That’s it.
So, really, you can bag on other fans as being ignorant and hateful all day if you makes you feel better, but the bottom line is that Russell and Randle have to be good, or Jim and Mitch will be gone. Mitch comp’d Randle to Lamar Odom, and one way to look at is that LO was the #3 guy on a championship team. I think that even Russell’s biggest fans do not see him as being a Magic Johnson-level guy, but I think the FO is banking on Russell being a #2 guy, an All-Star–a guy on the level of say, John Wall. Clarkson needs to be a good starter or a 6MOY type of guy, and then 2-3 of the other young guys–JBrown, ABrown, Nance, and Black–need to be contributors. I also think there is a hope that Upshaw can be lightning/bottle guy like H. Whiteside in Miami.
So, if those things happen, or a lot of them do, Jim and Mitch will probably get to stick around, self-imposed timelines and public promises notwithstanding. If they don’t, changes will be made, and it won’t have a thing to do with anything said by any fan anywhere.
Thank you, all and thanks Vasheed for the link! That was a very interesting read.