I’m going to keep this short and sweet. Tonight is the Lakers’ final game of the season. And while there is a lot to discuss about how this season went compared to expectations and what we wanted, there will be plenty of time for all of that. The postmortem on this season will take some time write and to digest, and this is neither the time nor the format.
What I will say is, that whatever this season was for you and whether you enjoyed it or not, it’s now basically over. There will be no more Lakers games to cheer for or scream at, to be happy about or disappointed in. The playoffs will start soon and that offers it’s own level of excitement and intrigue for basketball fans, but having the Lakers missing from the 2nd season for the 4th straight year (even though that was to be expected before the season), is just another reminder of the growth and improvement still needed. Again, though, this is another topic for another day.
The Lakers are looking to close their season on a winning note, though. Winners of 5 straight, the team is playing with and for each other for longer stretches. They’re making winning plays down the stretch on both ends of the floor. And while it’s easy to point to the flukiness of this part of the year or the specific motives of the opponents in each contest, I like that the Lakers are not only playing well enough to win, but doing those extra things needed to close out games. Whether this impacts them in May’s lottery remains to be seen, but I’m going to enjoy this stretch anyway.
Lastly, thanks to all of you who visit the site every day and read what we do here. This site is nearly 13 years old and I’ve been running it since the team’s run to the championship in 2010 (while being a contributor for years before that). This site means something to me and being able to do this and have folks join me every day, be it by reading our analysis or jumping into the comments section, is special. So, again, thank you for being a part of that.
Now, enjoy tonight’s game as best you can. And since the team is locked into “3rd”, why not cheer them on to end the season with six straight W’s.
Where you can watch: 7:30pm start time on Spectrum Sportsnet.
I visit this page more than any other. I appreciate your perspective and your analysis.
Also, I’ve been enjoying the LFR podcast. Thank you for all you do.
Mike Harley says
Good job this season! I really enjoy your writing. Keep doing what you do! Go Lakers
“…(even though that was to be expected before the season)…”
But after the first 20 games, the Lakers looked like they could grab the 8 seed.
Guess what: the current 8 seed in the West is essentially a .500 team, which the Lakers happened to be after 20 games.
If the Lakers win out, they’ll end up 27-55 (unlikely, but they did paste GSW early in the season and the Warriors have nothing to play for).
I figured the Lakers for 28-30 wins this year, so they haven’t fallen too far below my expectations.
Unfortunately, some of the dramatic negatives of this year (e.g. the Mozdeng contracts, the Buss family Game of Thrones drama, etc.) have overshadowed the gradual and incremental progress the Lakers have made as a team.
No, none of the young core look like Jeanie Buss’ desired Laker All-Star (yet), but things are a good deal more hopeful than when leading minutes-per-game Lakers included Jabari Brown, Wayne Ellington, Carlos Boozer, and Jordan Hill.
Here’s hoping the offseason provides us with favorable ping-pong ball bounces and intersted talented free agents.
A season to forget for the most part but the first season since this damned rebuild started that we are seeing the team trending upward. We got 9 more wins than last season. I initially expected the Lakers to win between 25-30 games, so im pleased, we didn’t lose 60 games again either. Now the next big day is lottery night. Like i have said countless times i hope we get to keep the pick, but it wont be a catastrophe if we lose it. We have a pretty solid young core and the next Magic or MJ aren’t coming thru that draft door. At least we got several good young players out of that blasted Steve Nash trade. Most important than anything else was the regime change. I believe this new FO has the Lakers best interest in mind, not their own insecure selfish agendas. Plus we have a big name at the helm and a GM that i believe is going to get the job done. Finally im convinced that this summer is going to be interesting, pick or no pick. I have a feeling. This season ends a new era begins!!!! Go Lakers!!!!!!!
Garbage games or not like some people say they are not garbage ganes for the players sweating it out on the floor. Like Darius mentioned, there have been significant improvements on both ends of the floor the last 5 games. That cant be denied. Small sample i know and we need more talent, that’s obvious but the team is making some strides on it’s own. I want to congratulate Coach Walton for a superb job, regardless of the record. He’s been a teacher more than anything this season but his players are all in and im positive he will be a hell of a coach. And thanks to the Lou trade we will have a presence on the first round regardless of the Philly pick. And i think Ennis is becoming a keeper. Pretty good trade.
The second half of this season has been an exciting time as we began to see unmistakeable changes in Laker identity that promise more changes ahead–and a whole off season to make the transformation complete. It’s a time of hope.
The playoffs should help us identify trade prospects. The extra time and rest will help us hit the 2017-2018 season with an even stronger kick than this year–but with depth that can sustain us much better.
The Warriors–Lakers talent discrepency was glaring tonite–showing us that getting back on top will not be instantaneous: but it’s thinkable.
Keep up the fight, Darius. We’re headed in the right direction.
Darius – Thanks for another great year. You are my go-to source for all things Lakers, and fb&g is a daily habit. Thanks, too, to the regular posters for their insights, opinions, and lack of rancor. (I love that the comments are curated. It keeps the level of discourse at a higher level than most sites.)
Despite the loss last night, the win streak gave me some hope. I love Ingram’s development. Clarkson really came into his own as a lead guard at the end of the year, I thought. I remain frustrated by Russell and Randle defensively, but there is no doubt they have talent. And this year their development wasn’t wasted on poor coaching, as in year’s past. I’m high on Nance and Zubac – I can’t wait to see Z’s ceiling! – and unexpectedly enjoyed the hustle of Nwaba, Brewer and Ennis. We have a ways to go, but with new management there is reason for optimism.
And now for the lottery!