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  • LakerTom (Publisher) 10:45 AM on December 4, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    Lakers’ loss to Memphis had missed opportunities, injuries, & teachable moments 

     
  • LakerTom (Publisher) 10:42 AM on December 4, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    George Hill will miss third game in a row against the Lakers due to sprained toe 

     
  • LakerTom (Publisher) 9:08 AM on December 4, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    Five takeaways from the Lakers' 103-100 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies 

    1.) Lakers Coach Luke Walton is certainly keeping his focus on teaching. That might require reminders from his staff sometimes, but he’s remained consistent in that approach. “It’s nice to have people remind you, experienced people, where we’re at and where we’re trying to get to,” Walton said. “The fact that we’re 10-12 now and we’re having the type of progress this early is something to be happy or proud about.” His actions show a commitment to teaching above immediate results. At one point during the game, Walton pulled Julius Randle from the game so that he could talk over something he’d seen that he didn’t like. Making a substitution simply to make a point is a staple of Walton’s coaching style. He’s done it with the other young guys, even if there might be some strategic benefit to leaving those players in the game.

    2.) The Lakers expect big things from Julius Randle, and they are confident they’ll get them. That was a major theme of this whole four-game road trip. He dominated in Chicago, pulling in 20 rebounds and baring a fierce attitude. Saturday’s game was tougher for him. He had six points, six rebounds and five fouls, with a plus/minus of -10. After the game, Walton explained why he so often pulled aside Randle on Saturday for a series of animated discussions. “We expect Julius to be great,” Walton said. “There’s a lot of responsibility that comes with that. We’ve talked. Everything that I tell Julius is all about trying to make him better and make him realize this is his team as much as anyone else’s. We want him to be a leader. He got a couple early fouls I think we got frustrated with and that’s part of the process too; you’ve got to learn how to still play aggressive even with fouls. Different situations, different moments.”

    3.) Brandon Ingram is learning and growing. Ingram got his third consecutive start on Saturday. He’s logged a lot of minutes — 39 against the Grizzlies — and experienced being guarded by Memphis veteran Tony Allen. Ingram finished the game with nine points, five rebounds and a career high three blocked shots (all of them in the first quarter). Learning how to be a starter is crucial for Ingram and it’s easier to learn that through experience.

    4.) Walton used the same “cookie jar” phrase Marcelo Huertas used with me last week to describe what it’s like when opponents try to reach on Lou Williams. “I think he took advantage early of the fact that they have a lot of injuries too and they have rookies out there that aren’t familiar with keeping their hands out of the cookie jar,” Walton said. “He’s great when he recognizes a defender reaching, he gets his shot and he took advantage of that and I think it helped him get in a rhythm.” Williams had 40 points, with 21 of them coming in the second quarter. By halftime he’d shot 11 free throws.
    5.) The Lakers do better when they share the ball better. On Saturday the Grizzlies doubled the Lakers’ assists. Memphis had 32 while Los Angeles had a measly 16. The Grizzlies also scored 25 points off the Lakers’ 18 turnovers.

     
    • keen observer

      keen observer 9:37 AM on December 4, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Paragraph 5 is both the frustrating and most encouraging/exciting part of this whole process. As the team grows over the course of the season with all the bumps and bruises any fan should expect over the course of 82 games, the Lakers identity will continue to form in a positive way. They WILL share the ball better and they will also take better care of the ball. The absence of our injured players was noticeable last night, but Luke was absolutely right about his post-game praise despite the loss. As fans, we are now expecting wins in games like last night, but it is probably a better practice to dial it back a bit.

      Only two more games left of that brutal 12 game stretch. A home win (albeit the 5th game in 7 nights after a very long flight from Memphis) would assure a 4-8 record over that stretch, but Utah is one of the better defensive teams in the league. Look for an ugly Bulls-style game. Hopefully we’ll get D-lo, Uncle P AND Junior back real soon.

    • tate793

      tate793 11:41 AM on December 4, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Good insight, Mr. Keen. Whenever we can identify the areas that contributed to a loss, a bad performance, etc., it also, simultaneously provides a blueprint for improvement. More free throw practice (had we made our free throws we would have won the game), learning how to defend without fouling, and getting to the open spot on the floor where the passer can get the ball to you at the right moment.

      Losses do a very effective job of exposing areas of concern. Areas that need improvement. Just like wins can show areas where progress has been achieved.

  • LakerTom (Publisher) 7:40 AM on December 4, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    Luke Walton: “Everyone f—ing travels every play so how do you just decide to call that?” 

     
  • LakerTom (Publisher) 7:38 AM on December 4, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    Luke Walton wants and expects Julius Randle to be one of the Lakers’ leaders 

     
  • LakerTom (Publisher) 7:33 AM on December 4, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    Lou Williams scores 40 points but Lakers fall short in a hard fought game against Memphis 

     
  • GDUBinDC

    GDUBinDC 8:36 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    Musical break …

     
    • Magic Phil

      Magic Phil 8:43 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      G…My man…G. Thx for reminded me that there’s still hope as long as we have you around to let everyone knows that the groove will never die. Ohio players…hell yeah… I guess my memory can’t handle all the bands I wish people just listen a bit more.

      Hm…brb

      • GDUBinDC

        GDUBinDC 8:45 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        No doubt, MP … The Funk Will NEVER Die!!!

        • AK27

          AK27 8:47 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          But we will……..and that’s just unfair Lol

          • GDUBinDC

            GDUBinDC 8:49 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            Au contraire, my good friend … we don’t die … we just rearrange. : )

            • AK27

              AK27 8:52 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

              So, this whole “death” business is a big scam to scare and control people ? :D

            • GDUBinDC

              GDUBinDC 8:53 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

              Finally figured it out, did ya? : )

            • AK27

              AK27 8:57 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

              Question is…how could you possibly know of this rearrangement and does it involve some preservation of our identity ? Unless you bribed some folks really high up in the sky ? :D

            • GDUBinDC

              GDUBinDC 9:02 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

              Haha … I’ll never tell. : D

        • Magic Phil

          Magic Phil 8:48 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          As long as me, Magic Phil is alive, certainly not.

          • GDUBinDC

            GDUBinDC 8:50 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            Now THAT’S what I’m talkin’ ’bout, MP!

            • Magic Phil

              Magic Phil 8:53 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

              Wait….G, you’re as old as me. Whatta hell was that in 1974? The lyrics just blew my mind back then

            • Magic Phil

              Magic Phil 8:55 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

              dam…

            • GDUBinDC

              GDUBinDC 8:56 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

              YESSIR!

            • GDUBinDC

              GDUBinDC 8:57 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

            • Magic Phil

              Magic Phil 8:58 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

              You know…the more things change, the more they stay the same

            • GDUBinDC

              GDUBinDC 9:00 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

            • GDUBinDC

              GDUBinDC 9:04 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

            • Magic Phil

              Magic Phil 9:08 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

              I gotta go to sleep…which reminds me of…

              peace out

            • GDUBinDC

              GDUBinDC 9:10 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

              Perfect, MP! : )

          • tate793

            tate793 8:59 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            • tate793

              tate793 9:00 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

            • Magic Phil

              Magic Phil 9:01 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

              SLY!!!!!! Larry G!!!!!!

            • tate793

              tate793 9:01 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

            • Magic Phil

              Magic Phil 9:02 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

            • tate793

              tate793 9:02 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink

              Yep, Slap Master Graham, himself!

    • GDUBinDC

      GDUBinDC 9:21 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Thx, MP & tate!

  • DJ2KB24

    DJ2KB24 7:51 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    Ran out of steam.

     
    • GDUBinDC

      GDUBinDC 7:58 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Pretty much … their biggest weakness thus far in the season came into play down the stretch -- DEFENSE(or lack thereof). Just couldn’t get those necessary stops in the closing few minutes.

      • DJ2KB24

        DJ2KB24 8:04 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        And down a couple key peeps doesn’t help. If Ingy would ever get his shot more consistent he could be a good one.

        • GDUBinDC

          GDUBinDC 8:31 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          I feel pretty confident he’ll get there eventually, Deej.

    • tate793

      tate793 8:32 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      You don’t miss 3 free throows that could have tied the game with 5 seconds left. After LUOL DENG made the steal of the game. 18 pts, 5 rebs, 4 steals and 1 blk. Like Mr. Keen said, he’s coming around.

      • GDUBinDC

        GDUBinDC 8:35 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Quite true, tate … those blown FTs were key. And u’re right about Luol, he had a great stat line tonight … but u, keen, and I were among the few here who never really doubted that he’d eventually put up numbers like that.

        • AK27

          AK27 8:45 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          What did you think was the main reason for his underwhelming performance prior to this game, G ?

          • GDUBinDC

            GDUBinDC 10:33 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            Sorry, AK … got so caught up in the music thread that I overlooked ur question on Luol.

            I think it may have just taken a lil while for him to adjust to his new teammates and Coach Walton’s new system. Not every player is able to adjust rapidly on the fly as some others seem able to. But I never doubted that a player with his high bball I.Q. would eventually figure it out and contribute in a significant way at some point. After all, it’s only been barely a quarter of the season, so let’s see how he looks after the AS break b4 we assess where his level of play is.

            • AK27

              AK27 7:35 AM on December 4, 2016 Permalink

              G, if you ate almost a quarter of a cake of unknown and likely variable constitution, and it didn’t taste good, wouldn’t it be reasonable to guess that it might not taste good after all ? That’s not an insignificant chunk, ya know ? Lol

              You are saying that a quarter of the season ain’t enough to reliably assess his level of play… OK…but one good game is enough for a “hey, I was among those who got this right !” pat on the back for yerself, eh ? :D

            • GDUBinDC

              GDUBinDC 11:44 AM on December 4, 2016 Permalink

              Not tryna ‘pat myself on the back’ at all, AK … just acknowledging that I wasn’t among those who were so quick to deride Luol bcuz of his subpar play thus far in the season, along with his contract, which, BTW, I’m sure they would have signed, too, had they been in his shoes. Nor will I fault the Ls front office for the signing since it wasn’t as if the top tier FAs were knocking down their door to join the team. They signed who they thought were the best available free agents that they believed could help the team for the terms they both could live with. It’s a lil too early for me to say they were ‘bad’ signings when we haven’t even gotten halfway thru the season.

              Sometimes I think some fans r a lil too quick to write-off players when they don’t meet ‘their’ expectations rather than be a lil more patient and give them a chance to show if they can rebound. I’ve been critical of certain players at times, too, but I try to refrain from constantly criticizing them bcuz I like to give them a chance to prove me wrong. And more often than not, they usually do. That said, I understand that some fans may feel the need to harp on the same old tired narratives, perhaps as some form of catharsis. IDK : )

        • tate793

          tate793 8:48 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          That’s right, GDub. Deng picked a good time yo dtep it up. And Julius picked a bad time to lay an egg.

          • GDUBinDC

            GDUBinDC 10:35 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            Yeah, tate … Julius has been in a bit of a slump these past coupla games. Let’s see how he does when he gets back to STAPLES.

  • LakerTom (Publisher) 2:45 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    Larry Nance Jr. discusses the possibility of participating in this year’s Slam Dunk Contest 

     
  • LakerTom (Publisher) 2:44 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    Westwood, we’re coming home 

     
  • LakerTom (Publisher) 11:55 AM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    The Bruins take down No. 1 UK for the 2nd straight season 

     
    • LakerTom (Publisher) 12:02 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Great win by the Baby Bruins, who are playing eerily like the Baby Lakers. Couldn’t watch the game from work but followed the play-by-play and have the game recorded to watch tonight. Lonzo Ball is the Real Deal. His papa has promised the Bruins will win the NCAA championship this year and his prediction could actually come true. Baby Bruins are moving the ball like the Baby Lakers and its only going to get better.

      Lonzo’s two brothers, who have also signed with the Bruins, may be even better than him. LiAngelo, who is part of the Bruins #1 ranked recruiting class for next year, just scored 72 points in a game and is averaging over 50. Then there is high school freshman LaMelo Ball, also commited already to UCLA, who might be the best Ball of All. Steve Alford has had back-to-back great recruiting classes. Bruins are Back!

      • DJ2KB24

        DJ2KB24 12:42 PM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Just finished watching, little erratic at the end, but they hung on.

  • LakerTom (Publisher) 11:46 AM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    10 Things to Know: Lakers at Grizzlies 

    4. Injuries have already cost the Lakers their starting backcourt — D’Angelo Russell (sore left knee) and Nick Young (strained calf, right leg) — and now they might be without one of their key bench pieces. Larry Nance Jr. has a contusion on his right knee after bumping it in Friday’s game. He is listed as questionable for Saturday.

    5) If anyone knows about injuries, it’s the Grizzlies. Twenty-seven players had to suit up for a riddled Memphis squad last year, as it became the first in league history to make the playoffs while playing even 24. It’s the same story this year, as the Grizzlies have six players out for this game, including Mike Conley, Zach Randolph, Chandler Parsons and Vince Carter.

    8) Lakers fans from the mid-1990s will be sure to see a familiar face sitting on the Grizzlies’ bench. Former Laker Nick Van Exel is in his first season as a Memphis assistant coach 23 years after making his playing debut in L.A. Van Exel led the Lakers in assists for all five of his years with the team, twice ranking in the NBA’s top 10 in dimes and making it to one All-Star Game.

     
  • LakerTom (Publisher) 11:02 AM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    The beat-up Lakers take on the even more beat-up Grizzlies. Tonight, 5 p.m. 

    The Los Angeles Lakers were battered and beaten by the Toronto Raptors Friday night but still have a chance to close out their four-game road trip 2-2 when they visit the Memphis Grizzlies Saturday. Splitting the travel-heavy trip while missing both D’Angelo Russell and Nick Young would be huge for the Lakers, and that it would be against the Grizzlies has larger implications.

    The Lakers need to make ground on one of the playoff teams ahead of them. The Grizzlies, sans Mike Conley, are the clear target for the time being. The purple and gold might be hurting, but the Grizzlies are in even worse shape. James Ennis, Zach Randolph, Chandler Parsons, Vince Carter and Brandan Wright could all miss the game Saturday, with a variety of injuries — both long term and short term — tearing their squad apart.

    The Lakers are pretty dang healthy when you put it like that.

     
    • LakerTom (Publisher) 11:10 AM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      This is the game we need to get back to .500 and show we can weather the tough schedule and injuries. The Grizzlies, like the Bulls, really lack the kind of offensive punch that our defense is just not good enough yet to derail. I think we will come out strong and shut Memphis down like we did Chicago.

      This game is also important to our playoff hopes as the Grizzlies are the likely team we need edge out for the #8 playoff spot. We need to take advantage of Conley being out and go all out to win this game. We need Calderon to take care of the ball and everybody to come out with energy and aggression.

  • LakerTom (Publisher) 10:26 AM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    The NBA D-League has a new assists leader. Josh Magette 

     
    • LakerTom (Publisher) 10:27 AM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Shooting 40% from deep and 92% from the line.

    • Jamie Sweet (Local Ne'er-Do-Well)

      Jamie Sweet (Local Ne'er-Do-Well) 10:41 AM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Yeah, dude has been balling hard, playing within the system.

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 10:54 AM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I haven’t seen the Defenders play other than snippets here and there but I love this kid’s assists-to-turnovers ratio and his stroke from deep. Kind of like the best of Huertas and Calderon combined. His defense can’t be worse than Marcelo’s and Jose’s. We always ignore those last three slots on the roster but when injuries and fouls mount, those guys can be important components. Besides a starting center, the Lakers next biggest need is a solid young backup true point guard.

      • keen observer

        keen observer 10:57 AM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Wrong! The Lakers biggest need is a pure D/3 shooting guard. The offense that Luke runs obviates the necessity of a prototypical point guard, but that has been another agenda item of yours going back to our championship seasons because YOU are a point guard. We don’t need one. We need to get healthy first.

      • Jamie Sweet (Local Ne'er-Do-Well)

        Jamie Sweet (Local Ne'er-Do-Well) 10:59 AM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        It can, his defense is nowhere near Julian Jacob’s (which is also a WIP but he’s certainly the best one-on-one defender on our D-League team). However, as defense becomes more a team responsibility and less a man to man one. Getting Young and Russell back sooner than later means a call up for either sounds unlikely. Feels like the staff wants to see what more minutes does for Ingram and on Lou Williams play making skill set.

  • LakerTom (Publisher) 10:20 AM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    Lakers Luke Walton Belongs in Coach of the Year Discussion 

    Often, he has refused to make the easy decision when choosing lineups. However, when asked if there is a vote, Walton makes it clear that he listens to his counsel, but he is running a dictatorship, not a democracy. Walton owns that final call, and it tends to be the correct call.

    Walton started the regular season with a considerably better roster than the Lakers featured on the night Kobe Bryant scored 60 points to record win no. 17 in an 82-game season that would be entirely forgettable had it not doubled as Bryant’s farewell tour. However, Walton played an active role in building the team over the summer and maximized every roster spot entering the regular season.

     
    • LakerTom (Publisher) 10:36 AM on December 3, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      It’s easy to forget with all the things that Luke has hit for home runs on since taking over as the Lakers head coach that he was a big part of the decision to sign Deng and Mozgov to those big 4-year contracts.

      While we’re only a fourth of the way through the season and while the size of the contracts will continue to diminish as the cap continues to soar, it’s hard not to suffer from buyer’s remorse and concern over the length of both deals as Deng and Mozgov struggle to deliver value.

      I believe once Young is ready to come back, Ingram will replace Deng in the starting lineup, which will hopefully take some of the pressure off of Luol. Hopefully, he will get into Oscar’s “midseason” form and successfully fill Ingram’s backup small forward role and keep the bench rolling.

      Mozgov is the bigger problem than Deng in my mind because I don’t see him as a good fit as the starter or with the second unit. He has not proven to be a solid rim protector (0.6 blocks per game) and is a huge liability defending the pick-and-roll. Our only hope is that there will be some team below the salary floor that needs a center the next couple of years. The Lakers biggest needs is for a new starting center.

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