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  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 2:49 PM on April 15, 2018 Permalink |  

    Yes there is more then free agency 

    Aloha

    As it has been all year, free agency has been the number one topic in Laker land all year. But with the success we have had the last several years in the draft maybe it’s time to start thinking a little bit about it. Now one thing for sure is the Laker will probably surprise us all with their picks. And whoever it is will probably be pretty good.

    Right now the mock drafts are all over the place as you will see. It probably won’t settle down until after the combines. We need at PG and SF. But also like the positional versatility we have been drafting into. All of our young core can play more then one position. So these these are some of the guys I’ve been thinking about in no particular order.

    Shake Milton is a 6’6” Junior PG with a 7’ wingspan. He was injured this year so it maybe driving his stock down. I have seen the Lakers taking him in the 1st and 2nd round. Also today I saw 22nd and 29th. He is an average athlete who averaged 18ppg 4.4 assists Projects at both guard positions with defensive upside became of that wingspan.

    If wanted to go the development route Troy Brown could be the guy. One mock has the Lakers grabbing him, and as high as 14. He is a 6’ 6” wing with a 6’ 11” wingspan. Like BI he was a high school pg. not a great shooter yet but he is a playmaker slasher and projects as an elite defender.

    Chandler Hutchinson is a 6’ 7” senior wing who was late bloomer. Decent 3 point shooter who average 20ppg 7.7 rebounds and 3.5 assists and plays good defense. The mocks have us taking him or going in the high teens and one mock has him 31st.

    Keira Bates Diop is a 6’ 7” SF who shows up in both the 1st and 2nd rounds. Averaged 21ppg 9.5 rebounds and an impressive 1.8 blocks a game. High end defender.

    Gary Clark is a 6’ 8” combo forward who I’ve seen the Lakers taking in both the 1st and 2nd round. 12.5 ppg who shot .435 from 3. He pulled down 8.7 boards 2.1 assists 2.1 assists and 1.2 blks.

    Any these are few guys a looked into. It’s funny with the various projections we coul end up with two of these guys. Most are 3 or 4 year players that tend to drop but we know how valuable the older guys can be. Who do you guys like in the draft.

     
    • Michael H (Editor)

      Michael H (Editor) 2:56 PM on April 15, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I forgot to mention that Shake shot .435 from 3. And whate a great name. :)

    • mclyne32 (Director) 5:54 PM on April 15, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Aloha Michael,
      Thanks for the write up. I don’t spend much time scouting college prospects. I know we’re in good hands since our great scouting department has done such a great job over the past four years.

    • keen observer

      keen observer 6:23 PM on April 15, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I never even heard of Kyle Kuzma before the Lakers drafted him (probably because none of the mock drafts had him coming to the Lakers), didn’t remember Josh Hart from the Villanova championship game and vaguely recognized Thomas Bryant from some of the mock drafts (probably because at least one had him coming to the Lakers).

  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 2:00 PM on April 9, 2018 Permalink  

    To Max or not to Max 

    Aloha

    Kevin Dings article here got me to thinking about what this year has meant to me. I must say I have really enjoyed this season. The only downer for me was the amount of injuries we sustained. It was frustrating losing close games to good teams short handed. This was easily a .500 or better team when healthy.

    So now I’m wondering what the F.O is thinking. The became the year with a stated goal of two max players and they took steps to have that flexibility. Then a funny thing happened. Growth. Randle began to put up all star numbers in the new year and he began to play elite defense. BI didn’t just take a step forward, he took a flying leap forward. While management was really happy to land Kuz, I’m sure not even thought he would emerge as one of the best Rookies in his class. And you can’t sleep on Josh Hart either. He went 30th pick to a guy playing at a lottery pick level. Honestly he was better then a lot of the lottery picks.

    So does signing a free agent wing like Paul George, help or hinder our future growth? For me a max player should elevate a team. But after watching OKC Hang on to the playoffs for dear life I’m having 2nd thoughts handing PG 30% of the salary cap. Considering BI, Kuz and Randle play the positions that PG plays could he actually set the development of the kids back like Butler has done to Wiggins in Minny. I looked at the numbers and I wonder just how much PG helps.

    PG 36 min 21.6 pts per 5.7 reb 3.4 assists .428 shooting% .390% from 3

    BI 33.5 min 16.1 pts per 5.3 boards. 3.9 assists .470 shooting % .390 from 3

    Kuz 31.2 min 16.1 pts per 6.3 1.8 assists .450 shooting% .366 from 3

    Now PG on the other side of the ball is an impressive defender. However BI is on the way to that level. I think his defense has been one of the impressive aspects of his game. I just don’t expect much defense from a 20 year old but his been very good. And Kuz has made great strides as well.

    So the question is how much better will be next better with PG at 30 mil. Before he went down Cousins was the guy I had the most interest in. Mainly because we had developing guys everywhere else. And he still maybe. But if your not Lebron, KD, Harden or a couple of others, I’m not sold on spending 30 to 35 percent of the cap when you have to young guys that are only going to get better next year.

     
    • MongoSlade

      MongoSlade 2:53 PM on April 9, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      You can add PG13 and still keep the core.
      I don’t see the downside….

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 3:08 PM on April 9, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Aloha, Michael.

      Outstanding post with an interesting topic. Does it make sense to add superstars who play the same position as your young stars? I made the same point in my last article. We have our point guard, small forward, and power forwards of the future so maybe we should target shooting guard and center with our cap space. That would give our young stars the most opportunity to grow and develop.

      However, I see Paul George much differently than you. In today’s NBA, you can play what you can guard and I alctually think shooting guard could be PG’s best position offensively and defensively. Paul is great guarding players like Klay Thompson or JJ Reddick who run defenders through a gauntlet of screens and coming off screens. In my mind, George’s ability to play the 2 is why I like him better than LeBron or Kawhi, both of whom would likely make Ingram play out of position or be traded.

      A question directly related to your question is 2 superstars or 1. What keeps bringing me back to 2 is that that’s the number of positions for which we do not have a budding star. Shooting guard and center. Now you could possibly argue that Josh Hart could the man at the 2 but more likely he, like Kuzma, would be best anchoring our second unit as we need to add superstars. But there are some arguments to be made about 2 superstars or 1. I mean, how do you beat a team like the Warriors who have 4 superstars?

      You can also argue that the Warriors, Cavs, and Rockets don’t have superstars at center so why should we? My answer to that is so can have a huge advantage that will help offset the huge disadvantages we have because we don’t have LeBron or Kawhi, or Durant or Steph or Harden. And you need a center who can spread the floor and protect the rim. Center may not be as important as some of the other positions in the modern game or it may just appear that way because none of the recent teams with elite centers have been great. It’s an opportunity or window to get an edge.

      As for having to pay the max for guys who aren’t LeBron or Harden, it’s the only way you’re going to win in this NBA. Yeah, Kuz will steal a couple of games with great closes. As will Julius and Brandon. And even Hart. But what the Lakers lack is that veteran superstar who is so good and consistent that other teams have to totally focus on him opening up all kinds of opportunities to win close games.

      The Lakers need their next Kobe and much as I love Ingram, Kuzma, and Lonzo, they’re still two or three years away at best from filling that role. We’re probably a bottom four Western playoff team right now without making major changes. Unfortunately, we will have to lose some players to take a step forward, which could be Randle, KCP, Lopez, or Thomas depending on this summer’s events.

      Right now, I’m not interesting in any deal that doesn’t leave us with Lonzo, Ingram, Kuzma, Randle, and Hart. Those five are almost untouchable to me. 3 starters now and 2 next gen starters. Whatever we do after that will depend on luck and opportunity. I think PG is my top priority. If we get him, then we fill the shooting guard starting slot and have two elite bench players in Kuzma and Hart. That’s the key to a winning summer in my opinion. That opens up a world of opportunities. Anything more is gravy.

      All we need then is a starting center. If we somehow lose Randle, I might make a big offer to Capela as an RFA because he would be a great fit with Kuzma but not with Randle. But assuming we keep Julius, then we need a stretch 5 and Boogie is the obvious perfect fit. Plan B would probably be Lopez.

      The other thing to like about only adding PG is you would also be able to keep Isaiah Thomas for another year to see if he could get back to the player he was for the Celtics. That’s a silver lining in missing out on two superstars. You could end up with a mini-superstar in IT.

    • Rocky

      Rocky 7:45 PM on April 9, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      My question is should we give Julius Randle a max deal? You know other teams out there are going to try to pry him away. He’s going to get paid no doubt about it. I’m thinking some team, (Mavs?) will give him a max offer. Should the Lakers match it?

      Of course this depends on a lot of other factors as well, but in my opinion, Julius has proven that he’s worth a max offer this year. Whether it’s with the Lakers or not, we shall see…

      Go Lakers!

      • Rocky

        Rocky 7:55 PM on April 9, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        In addition, I am not sure that PG is worth a max contract from the Lakers. What are we going to do? Trade BI and Kuz? That would be crazy at this point. But who knows…

        I love that the Lakers have so many options. Hopefully Magic and Pelinka can work some magic.

    • keen observer

      keen observer 8:36 PM on April 9, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Great points. A part of me hopes that Paul George stays in OKC. Someone will pay him. It happens every off season. The Golden State Warriors grew with a young core of Steph, Klay and Dray, made a deal here (Monta for Bogut; garbage for Iggy) and eventually splashed for KD, that rare superstar you are talking about. Look at The Process in Philly. Aren’t we tracking more for what those two organizations did? Or are we seeing an illusion where these youngsters look better than they actually are because they wouldn’t have these prominent roles on teams that start players like Paul George? Is Paul George less of a player because he has to play second fiddle to Russell Westbrook (and is fine with that)?

      In the end, it’s a no brainer to me. You pay Paul George to come and you keep Randle. The small ball, fast break 5 of Lonzo, BI, PG, Kuzma and Randle can go up against anyone. It’s a “perfect fit.” Someone will pay Paul George and we are starved for a player of his caliber, never mind those numbers. He wasn’t among the last 10 on the floor in the All-Star game for no reason. He may not be LeBron, Harden or Russ, but he is one of “those guys.”

      I think he’ll stay put though. And I’m fine with that, too.

    • NBA4ever

      NBA4ever 1:00 PM on April 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I agree with you 100% except I’m still wanting to sign Cousins 1st and foremost. Hopefully he will sign for a 9% discount ;) It puzzles me as to why everyone instantly went away from wanting Cousins who is only 27 years old with a game that is built on skill and power and not athleticism. Comparing his injury to Kobe who at that point was how old with how many miles on him??? Cousins was getting better every year, and I expect him to continue to do so. In my opinion I still think he’s the perfect target. Anything beyond Cousins I couldn’t care less about. If we sign PG cool, if not cool…I’m with Michael on this one, I can patiently wait for our young core to develop one more year.

      • keen observer

        keen observer 1:53 PM on April 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Hypothetically, let’s say we sign Boogie, Randle and KCP. Starting 5 is Lonzo, KCP, Ingram, Randle and Cousins. I love that on paper ASSUMING Boogie returns to good health. Why? Boogie, Ingram and Randle are the primary scoring options allowing Lonzo and KCP to expend more energy defending the perimeter, which might be the most important aspect of defense in the NBA these days given the continuous uptick in 3 point shooting. With Kuzma coming off the bench, he can rotate in for either Randle or Cousins without a drop off in scoring production.

        In terms of the Achilles injury, that is a risk. The best analogy would be Elton Brand because he was 28 when he ruptured his Achilles and was a skilled big man who just 2 seasons before that was an MVP candidate. He never rounded back into form, although he was serviceable. I can’t think of another player with that injury who came back successfully who wasn’t a floor player. Dominique Wilkins came back the most successfully from this injury and we all know what went on with Kobe. Wesley Matthews has been pretty much the same player, although it is difficult to tell because he’s in a different system (numbers down slightly).

        I would say that given our young core, which includes young promising role playing 20 year old centers in Zubac and Bryant, I think I would pass unless it came at more of a discount than 9%. We already have plenty of developing firepower and improved defensively leaps and bounds this season IMO.

        • NBA4ever

          NBA4ever 4:16 PM on April 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          Love that starting lineup. Wasn’t Elton Brand’s biggest issues post Achilles his shoulder? Didn’t Elgin Baylor rupture his early on? If you go with Zubac or Bryant then it’s going to be much further down the road. Ideally I’d like to sign Cousins for 3 years with team option for 60-70M.

      • mclyne32 (Director) 2:41 PM on April 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        It will be a HUGE gamble for anyone to give Cousins a large, long term deal before we see how much he’s lost.
        If Magic and Rob decide that they are going to roll the dice, I will be fine with it, but I wouldn’t do it.

      • MongoSlade

        MongoSlade 4:40 PM on April 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Some other things to look at when discussing these injuries are the huge advances in surgical and rehab techniques that have come along in the years since Nique & EB. You just don’t see alotta guys who don’t make full recoveries anymore.

    • MongoSlade

      MongoSlade 2:39 PM on April 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I look at our cap situation and feel like it would be a huge mistake NOT to sign at least one max free agent and probably 2 or at least a max & 2nd tier guy who currently isn’t on the team. I’d hate to see us use cap room instead of Bird Rights to sign Ju or IT or KCP. Ideally, you wanna burn the cap space on new talent (I honestly don’t care if it’s PG, DMC, or LBJ or any combination of those 3 at this point} and then go over to keep the guys you already have. Sure..the luxury tax becomes an issue but it shouldn’t be when we have one of the most profitable franchises in the league. Say what you will about Dan Gilbert but he’s never let the money stand in his way.

      Right now we’re in a very unique financial position to set the stage for a sustained title run if Earv & Rob play this correctly. But if we use up the space to “keep the gang together” then I think we’ll end up coming up short in the future.

      • NBA4ever

        NBA4ever 4:21 PM on April 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        I understand this take as well, using the cap now so we can use the bird rights on our guys. We use all the cap with guys that provide value either for us or for trades- regardless of their position.

      • therealhtj

        therealhtj 5:14 PM on April 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        You’re gonna have to renounce at least IT and KCP for those max slots. Bird rights go along with them.

      • keen observer

        keen observer 5:20 PM on April 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        I agree that the ideal scenario is to sign or trade for (Kawhi) at least one max guy, if possible, and re-sign Randle while keeping the young core together as much as possible. It is still a superstar league this time of year.

      • LakerTom (Publisher) 6:55 PM on April 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Pretty much agree with that, Mongo. We do need to sign at least one max free agent, even if a gamble on Boogie. I do agree in principal that we need to maximize Bird rights for our own free agents and ideally we don’t spend any of our cap space on our own free agents other than their cap holds. Since Lopez’s cap hold is $33M, he would be the only players we might spend cap space on. We definitely want to use cap space to sign Randle as that would enable us to outbid anybody. Thomas would depend on what happens with superstars and Randle and only has a $12M cap hold similar to Randle.

    • Michael H (Editor)

      Michael H (Editor) 6:12 PM on April 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I wouldn’t want to trade for Kawhi because he would cost a lot. Probably Kuz and Ingram. I will be okay if we sign George, I just don’t think he elevates the team enough for a max deal but he will get one. Cousins would be a risk but because he is so big and strong that he could compensate for a little loss of mobility with pure power. It will be interesting to see if anyone gives him a long term max deal. Perhaps a one or two year deal at first. I do know that a Cousins Randle 4, 5 duo would be one of the nastiest ever. At this point I love our young core and I wouldn’t give any of them, I’m that confident in their futures.

  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 4:30 PM on April 1, 2018 Permalink  

    Can Randle attract free agents? 

     
    • Michael H (Editor)

      Michael H (Editor) 4:30 PM on April 1, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      ‘This is what I’ve been thinking lately.

      • LakerTom (Publisher) 5:14 PM on April 1, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        There’s no doubt that Aaron Mintz would love to see Randle stay with the Lakers. In fact, PG might be willing to take a little less to see it happen since it would benefit him too. And locking up Randle and George, would definitely make the Lakers suddenly more attractive to LeBron.

        Chronologically, the Lakers should reach a verbal agreement with Randle so he does not negotiate with other teams. Next is figuring out how to get rid of Deng.Then, they land PG, setting the stage. If they can close those two deals before the midnight bell tolls (yes, by whatever means), then they have a package to present to LeBron James or maybe Cousins.

        But if LeBron or Cousins doesn’t bite or is too big a risk, the Lakers then need to spend the rest of their cap space they would have paid LeBron so they can go over the cap to sign Randle. They could probably sign Lopez and maybe steal Marcus Smart from the Celtics.

        • DJ2KB24

          DJ2KB24 5:56 PM on April 1, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          I would like to see PG and LBJ and Randle. I still think LBJ is going to want the best possible Laker team over money. When Magic gets with PG and LBJ and needs a few extra Mil for Randle, I think they both would be on board.

    • p ang

      p ang 4:45 PM on April 1, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      may be should be MAY BE.

      always have an out when giving an unfounded opinion.

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 5:08 PM on April 1, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      The one thing that nobody seems to talk about is that it doesn’t make any sense for the Lakers to save cap space for summer of 2019 since doing so would require them to let Randle walk.

      Lakers have cap space for two max contracts. If they use their cap space to sign one, they would have to use the rest of the cap space to sign Randle or other free agents to get to the point where they could use Bird rights to go over the cap.

      The only way to use Bird rights to sign Randle is to use up the $60 million in cap space -- either on two superstars or on one superstar and two other mid-tier players, e.g. PG, Lopez, and Smart or PG and KCP or PG and Lopez and Thomas.

      In other words, Plan A is LBJ and PG. Plan B is PG and DC. Plan C is PG and use up the cap space to sign Randle using Bird rights.

      Bottom line, there really is no sign PG and save money for summer of 2019. The only way we save money for 2019 is if we completely strike out on superstars this summer. That’s Plan D.

      • MongoSlade

        MongoSlade 5:47 PM on April 1, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Lotta talk today from Jalen & The Wheelchair thinking that Kawhi has already played his last game as a Spur. Again…conjecture…but ex-players can kinda see the writing on the wall. Gotta imagine Earv & Rob have that as part of the equation somewhere….

        • mclyne32 (Director) 5:59 PM on April 1, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          I would be surprised if Rob and Magic haven’t spoken with the Spurs already.

    • MongoSlade

      MongoSlade 5:42 PM on April 1, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I respect Pincus because of the hard work he does on the salary cap and he’s one of the few who will respond to questions thru twitter. But when he reports on stuff like this he’s a lil bit outta his depth. He’s not like Woj or Shams out there beating the bricks talking to sources all day long. Alotta conjecture.

  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 12:27 PM on March 30, 2018 Permalink  

    Why Not Brook Lopez 

    Aloha,

    I have been thinking a lot about who the Lakers should pursue this summer. I have been thinking that we would be a better team if we signed just one max player and keep some of the current team. And I would like to have Brook back.

    Like everyone here I was so disappointed in Brooks play in the first part of the season. There was an occasional good game but over all he didn’t look anything like the player he had been his entire career. Then a funny thing happened. Randle was inserted into the starting line up. And together they have formed one of the better 4, 5 duos in the entire league. A lot has been made about Randles stretch of 20+ games but over the last 10 Brook has averaged 19.5 5.5 and 2.5.

    He is definitely old school in the post. Sometimes he looks like he is moving in slow motion. But what he lacks in speed and quickness he makes it up with size, power and strength. Against the Pels AD considered one of the best defenders in the league couldn’t stop him when he had position. Like everyone else he bounced off of him. He had one play that really was impressive. He took one dribble from around the 3 point line and dunked.

    There are prototypes for each position now in the NBA. Centers are suppose to be long, fast and athletic. But against Noel who is long, fast and athletic, Brook overwhelmed him with size and power. Between Brook and Julius Noel was doing his best impression of a pinball. Brook may not get as many rebounds as you would like but we have a good rebound rate while he is out there. He takes up so much space, if you watch him, there are times when he is keeping multiple players off the board. I think Brook is one of the reasons are guards are all rebounding at such a high rate. To top it off he is a plus rim protector. He has also proven he can play at pace. The Nets were number one last year in pace and we are up there ourselves. He has gotten rim run baskets this year. But he also gives us a 3 point threat as a trailer.

    I really like what Brook and Julius has developed as partners on the block. Them seem to know when to give each other space and Brook draws people out with his 3 point ability. Neither Brook or Julius are prototypes in the NBA but sometimes talent outweighs that ideal. With one max player and The Randle/Brook combo inside we would be a very good playoff team and in another year or two I believe with normal growth from the kids we will be real contenders. I hope we keep Brook and Julius together.

     
    • mud

      mud 1:16 PM on March 30, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Brook is a really high quality center.

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 1:50 PM on March 30, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Aloha, Michael.

      Good write up as usual. There’s no doubt Brook and Julius fit well together and Brook’s performance has taken off along with Julius. Some credit for Randle’s success has to go to the spacing that Brook’s ability to stretch the floor gives the Lakers when they play together. Luke usually goes to small ball with Randle at center down the stretch so Brook usually doesn’t close unless the matchup demands it.

      The big plus in my mind for bringing back Brook is his fit with Randle. Julius at the 4 requires a stretch 5 and Randle at small ball 5 requires a stretch 4, which the Lakers have in Kyle Kuzma. The more important that Randle becomes as our version of Draymond Green, the more Lopez and Kuzma become as players to complement Julius when he is playing the 4 or 5 respectively.

      Randle’s emergence changes what the Lakers should be looking for in a center. Players like Noel and WCS no longer fit because they cannot stretch the floor and open up the paint for Randle. To optimize Julius Randle, the Lakers need a center who can shoot from deep. That makes centers who can shoot from deep like Brook and Thomas Bryant more imporant to the Lakers than to other teams who don’t need a stretch 5.

      My latest version of PG and keep the kids has the Lakers renouncing everybody but Isaiah and Randle and waiving and stretching Deng, which would create around $48 million in cap space. Lakers would then use $30 million to sign PG, maybe $10 to sign Brook, and maybe the last $8 million to go after an elite wing defender like Marcus Smart or Trevor Ariza, whom the Celtics might decline to match.

      Of course, the ‘other’ center who would fit the Lakers needs perfectly as a stretch 5 to play alongside Randle would be DeMarcus Cousins. I’ve searched for information about what the Pelicans plan to do now but there’s no indication in the media. The assumption seems to be that Cousins will entertain bids. Right now, there are only a few teams -- Lakers, Mavs, Bulls, Hawks, and Pacers -- who will have the cap space to offer Cousins a max deal besides the Pels who have his Bird rights.

      There’s always been talk of mutual interest between the Lakers and DeMarcus Cousins and there is no question that DeMarcus brings another dimension to the center position than Lopez does. And that’s what ultimately is at the crux of my hesitation to completely support bringing back Brook. Let me see if I can lay out what I’ve been thinking, which comes down to the Lakers Plan B being PG and Boogie.

      First, the Lakers are not going to quit until they get a second superstar. If they don’t sign PG and LeBron or DMC this summer, they will likely trade some of their young talent for a second superstar next midseason or summer 2019. They won’t have the matching salaries to make a superstar trade this summer. Thus, if the Lakers want to keep Randle and their young core and not trade them, they need to sign a second superstar this summer when they have the cap space.

      Second, shooting guard and center are the positions at which the Lakers need their second superstar. Otherwise, they will block the path of their point guard, small forward, and power forward of the future. Paul George will fit perfectly at shooting guard and Cousins would fit perfectly at center. If LeBron won’t come, Lakers’ next call should be to DeMarcus Cousins. Brook would be the fall back.

      This may be the only opportunity the Lakers have to land the best center in the league. It’s worth the risk, even at a max price and losing the firs year to recovery and integration. The more I think about it, the more I think the Lakers need to go after PG and Cousins before settling for just PG.

    • Michael H (Editor)

      Michael H (Editor) 2:24 PM on March 30, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Aloha Tom

      A Cousins Randle front court would be nasty for sure. I’m really not sure what will happen there. As for the two star plan. That could have changed. A lot has happened sense the beginning of the year. They created the cap space to do it but Randle is Breaking out, Kuzma is so much better then even the FO thought he would be when they drafted him, Hart has played like a lottery pick and Brandon’s growth is more then expected. We actually have around 63 mil available. Excluding Deng We only have around 18 mil on the books for next year. Add Randles 12.5 mil cap hold and 7.2 mil if we stretch Deng. The projected cap is 101 mil. We fall a couple mil shy of signing Lebron and another max player but we have space for two 30 max players. So I really don’t see the Lakers trading anyone nor should they. For me short of signing Cousins I think a Randle Lopez is better then a 2nd max player. The good news is all of our options appear to be good ones.

    • GDUBinDC

      GDUBinDC 4:15 PM on March 30, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Outside of Boogie, I’m not sure Magic and Rob could do much better than Brook at this point. Of course, it depends on what does or doesn’t happen in free agency.

      • John M.

        John M. 5:51 PM on March 30, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        They’ve done a great job so far improving the team; I trust them to spend wisely. Regarding Julius, Magic was prophetic last summer about his breakout year. He’s not going to let him walk. If he does, and I were Luke, I’d quit :)

  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 12:42 PM on March 26, 2018 Permalink  

    How would you spend the money? 

    Aloha

    There has been a lot of talk about how would proceed this summer but here is what we have to work with. There are 5 guaranteed contracts on the books.
    Ball,BI,Kuz and Hart total $16,564,920
    Deng is $7,200,00 stretched if we can’t find a trade.
    Randles cap hold will be $12,500,00 if Render a qualifying offer which we will.
    $1,600,000 or so for the first round pick.
    That is a total of $37,864,920. The projected cap is $101,000,000. That gives us $63,135,080. Keep in mind we can save Randle for last and go over the cap.

    So how would you spend it?

     
    • mclyne32 (Director) 1:38 PM on March 26, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      PG
      Lopez
      Julius
      maybe KCP, depending upon how much he’s asking for
      backup PG
      rest of bench filler

    • Michael H (Editor)

      Michael H (Editor) 2:09 PM on March 26, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I would probably do the same but I don’t thing they would bring KCP back if they sign PG. plus I think KCP wouldn’t come back to come off the bench.

    • John M.

      John M. 3:37 PM on March 26, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Buy a fast car, put on my lead boots, and take a long, long drive :)

      • mclyne32 (Director) 5:13 PM on March 26, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        LOL!
        911 GT3RS or
        M4 GTS or
        Cayman GT4 or
        918

  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 11:20 AM on March 24, 2018 Permalink  

    Dang Deng 

    Tania Ganguli
    Tania Ganguli
    @taniaganguli
    Luol Deng sprained his ankle yesterday. He is questionable to be available to sit on the bench in uniform and watch the game.
    7:02 AM · Mar 24, 2018

     
  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 11:37 PM on February 26, 2018 Permalink  

    Can OKC miss the playoffs? 

    It’s not far fetched to think that OKC could miss the playoffs. They only have 20 games left. 13 are against current play off teams and the Clippers while not in the playoff bracket yet are tied with OKC in the loss column. Of those 13 2 are against the Rockets, 2 against the Spurs who could have Leonard back, one against the Warriors and 2 against a good Portland team. If they miss the playoffs I’m pretty sure George comes to the Lakers.

     
    • MongoSlade

      MongoSlade 5:32 AM on February 27, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      The 3 seed thru the 9 seed are separated by a single game in the loss column…gonna be alotta volatility over these last 20 games. Hell..the playoffs have already started for those teams.

      OKC is 5-5 over the last 10…that ain’t gonna cut it

    • Magicman (Editor)

      Magicman (Editor) 11:25 AM on February 27, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      It’s possible.

      If Adams goes down at all, they’ll lose ground.

  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 1:01 PM on February 24, 2018 Permalink  

    Conventional Wisdom 

    Aloha

    Up until mid January the conventional wisdom was that a star wouldn’t come to the Lakers alone. A second would have to come. And if we wanted Lebron perhaps you would need two other stars. I’m beginning to wonder if that narrative is changing.

    Brandon Ingram has been developing so fast that he could possibly be that 2nd star as early as next year. Since becoming that point forward his game has really taken off. Efficient Scoring, play making and defense all have put him firmly in the most improved conversation. Magic wanted him to become a 20 point a game scorer and it’s not a stretch to think he will next year.

    And Randle my goodness. I think it was Fish in the post game last night that said players just don’t see old school bully ball any more and outside of a couple of guys most can’t handle him. I had fun watching him Battle Adams another old school type when we played OKC. They just pounded on each other. But defensively is where he’s really grown. Barnes had 19 last night but only a couple of baskets were on Randles watch. Stu even commented he bet that Barnes was happy to see Randle go to the bench.

    There will be a lot of free agent eyes on this team the rest of the year. Does George look at the Lakers and say no I need another star. Or does he look at Ingram, Randle, Lonzo, Kuz and Hart and say, you know with me there it’s a pretty good team that’s only going to keep getting better.

    If the kids continue to improve it will give free agents as well as Magic and Rob a lot to think about.

     
    • John M.

      John M. 2:17 PM on February 24, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I completely agree. And Zubac is earning a seat at the table as well. One thing we know about Magic and Rob is, they will trade players who are expendable, but it will take a unique offer to mortgage the future.

      • Magicman (Editor)

        Magicman (Editor) 2:19 PM on February 24, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Zubac works on certain matchups, yup, a definite specialist.

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 3:37 PM on February 24, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Aloha, Michael,

      I sure hope you’re right about our young players being way ahead of schedule. I don’t know if we have a better young core than the Timberwolves or 76ers but when you throw in our cap space I think we will have a seat at the table for any superstar who becomes available the next couple of years.

      Whether we end up trading one or two of Ball, Ingram, and Kuzma in a packege to acquire a superstar like AD or Kawhi will untilmately depend on how much our young talent grows and what opportunities may arise so that a superstar suddenly is available like Kyrie Irving last year. Nobody saw that one coming before it happened and there seems to be a lot on negative noise coming from Kawhi’s camp.

      Everybody thinks Pops can easily solve the problem but it’s become bigger than a coach can solve and there’s no lucky draft pick like TD to save the day. The Spurs are #3 right now but they are very vulnerable and face the toughest schedule of any team in the West. Many analysts do not think they will make the playoffs. Pops or not Pops, the Spurs could always rely on being a winning team. Right now, that’s in danger and that may be part of why Kawhi may want a trade.

      Ironically, we’ve evolved from going after two superstars in free agency to three superstars by any means, including trading some of our young talent. Knowing Magic and Lakers’ exceptionalism, I’m sure that’s always been the real Plan A. I think Magic isn’t going to be content on waiting for all of young players to become stars. The big question might be which one of the three end up being the star who stays. My bet is on Lonzo, which is why I believe Ingram and Kuzma will ultimately be traded.

      Unless the Lakers strike out in free agency or their top targets don’t hit the market. That may be the only thing that prevents Magic and Rob from gutting the squad to build a superstar Big Four to compete with the Warriors. They’ll be looking to pull off the grand plan this summer. If they can’t, then maybe Lonzo, Brandon, Ingram, and PG with Randle and Thomas on short term deals will get a chance to show them they already have what they need to compete for a championship.

  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 12:52 PM on February 19, 2018 Permalink  

    Growth Spurts 

    Aloha

    While watching all star weekend most of the chatter centered around who the Lakers could land instead of who they have. While the record is not good they have lost a lot of games they could have or even should have won. And the trade has taken even more of the shine off the kids. For me this has been the most fun I’ve had in years watching Laker games. We really do have a bright future. I don’t think our chances of Landing a star this summer is good. But in a another year or two we might be a prime destination for a star.

    I think BI maybe the closest to becoming a home grown star. He has had some serious growth spurts this year. Besides the versatility to play one through three his offensive game has been evolving quite quickly over the season and for a 20 year old his defense is very good. By the end of next season we may not need more then one star.

    Kuzma on the other had took a step back but I think it’s just temporary. First he hit the dreaded rookie wall. Most of the time it takes awhile to develop an NBA body unless your Josh Hart who Already had one. The league now has a book on him now. He will need to adjust to the adjustments. I think he will. He has shown signs of just that the last few games. One thing I would like to see is Kuz getting some more run at the 3. They say your position is the position you can defend. While a bit simplistic there is some truth. I’m thinking ahead to what happens if we don’t get an all star. I have this fantasy of a line up with Ball, BI, Kuz, Randle and a rim protector behind them. That could be amazing. BI has shown the ability to defend guards Kuz has a offensive game that translates to SF if he can defend the SF, man that line could rock.

    Randle is another that has shown multiple growth spurts. He has become a more efficient beast inside and his defensive improvement this year is off the charts. If he can just develop a reliable 10 to 15 ft jumper and even a adequate 3 point shot he’s another guy the could become a star sooner then later.

    Poor Josh Hart, first his teammates won’t high five him(I think that’s hilarious) and then playing in the shadow of Lonzo and Kuz he hasn’t received much pub. Yet I would venture to say that in a redraft he just might be a lottery pick. He has shown tremendous growth over the last 20 games. He has everything it takes to become a very special 3 and D guy.

    Lonzo showed signs of improving offense before he was hurt. He already was running the show, rebounding and playing D before he was hurt. If he can stay healthy he will be the catalyst for another overall team growth spurt.

    Even if we don’t get a star this year. By the end of 2019 we could have our pick of them or just wait until 2020 and add AD to this group. We easily could become a legit contender.

     
    • DJ2KB24

      DJ2KB24 1:33 PM on February 19, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      MH, kinda tired of waiting. Hope the Iron is hot for us this summer.

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 12:12 PM on February 20, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Excellent post, Michael. I agree that the focus on the Lakers always seems to be what they don’t have rather than what they do have. Here’s my assessment what we have:

      1. Future starters and All-Stars under contract: Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma
      2. Future quality role players under contract: Josh Hart, Thomas Brant
      3. Future elite role players who are free agents: Julius Randle

      That’s a pretty solid core of 6 young players under 23-years old.

      All we need is a starting 2 and 5 and backup 1 and 3.
      PG & NN and IT & TA.

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

      Jamie Sweet (Local Ne'er-Do-Well) 1:26 PM on February 20, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Hey Michael, I couldn’t agree more on your take of Ingram. If he keeps this up all year it will make sliding him over to the 2 to accommodate (hopefully) Paul George’s arrival a lot easier. He can hang with all but the quickest of players and he’ll out-length all but the tallest.

      I also agree on Randle. I’ll settle for BI like improvement with his outside shot. Hit those 15-20 footers for a good while, then step out to the three point line. He also needs to take them to make them. It’s often his 4th or 5th option but when he rears up and lets fly, like with his free throws, he’s a lot better.

      I think Josh Hart would be a lottery pick in a re-draft. What I really wonder is if we would end up with Donovan Mitchell or if Philly would have him now in said re-draft. Love his demeanor and he plays, solid guy to have on the team.

      I’m more dubious of Ball’s offense than others but I’m also squarely of the opinion it doesn’t matter. He only needs to score enough to force the defense to guard him off of screens which means over the summer he’ll need to get better at coming off of screens. If we keep IT Jr that is the one, tiny little bright spot I could see is if Thomas can help him get better at P&R.

      • LakerTom (Publisher) 1:36 PM on February 20, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        I agree with both of your assessments of Randle but not Ingram, whom is not a good fit to play the 2. Paul George is a much better fit at the 2 than Brandon Ingram. Right now, Ingram is far better playing the 3 than chasing defenders through gauntlets of screens. PG is also a much better catch-and-shoot player who can play without the ball coming off screens whereas almost all of Ingram’s shot attempts come off isolation drives and pull ups.

      • tate793

        tate793 11:20 PM on February 20, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Who the heck is IT Jr?

  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 9:59 PM on February 15, 2018 Permalink  

    Zubac 

    Aloha,

    That’s 3 games now that we played well against the T Wolves only to lose down the stretch. Having Butler is a big plus I guess. But there were some good performances. Zubac was great. I would give up Brooks’s 3 pointers if he played the way Zubac did tonight. Zubac played big man ball while Brook doesn’t play big that much anymore. I was also impressed with Zubac’s defense against Towns. He forced him to pass out of the post several times. Everyone wants to see more of Bryant but outside of the 3 point shot Zubac has been better then Bryant in most other areas in the G league games I’ve watched. They both have upside and I hope we hold on to both.

    Randle had another strong game as well. He also played great defense against Towns. The guy is just a beast and I’m so glad that we didn’t trade him. Maybe Luke should have played Zu and Randle more together because Gibson was having his way with Lopez and Kuz. We could have put Randle on Gibson. Neither Kuz or Lopez brought much offense tonight. Brandon wasn’t as good as some of the previous games but I thought he was okay. Kind of got use to the level he had been playing at. But KCP made up for it with his best game in weeks. I think this was a game we win before the trade because IT was bad. 3 for 15 is not going to cut it. I think Luke rode him too long. It was his missed shots and turnovers in the 4th that really killed us. Hopefully a little rest, practice and a Healthy roster will translate into some good wins after the break.

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

      Jamie Sweet (Local Ne'er-Do-Well) 11:12 PM on February 15, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Hey Michael, Zubac played great, as if he had no rust. Active on the glass, using his vertical defense and moving his feet. Best game since last year. It’s on him to make the most of the vacuum left by Larry. Loved when he went to the floor and forced that turnover. Made free throws, hit his shots. Solid.

      Randle in the starting line up has been great. I wish he had been there all season but I think in some ways it forged that edge better. AT a y rate, my new hope is for Randle to develop abetter 4th quarter game. He has no adjustment to when they key in on him and double/triple team him in the post. He’s either gotta kick faster or pull it back out and reset. He’s at his worst when he plays in one dimension, or along straight lines. Don’t be the Rook, at least be the Bishop or, better yet, the Knight. Although Rooks can be a force to be reckoned with…

      Josh Hart continues to be a revelation. IT struggles in the paint and most teams won’t leave him open. He made some great passes tonight, really got that second unit engaged. I has hopes he and Zubac would develop a game together, the bigger the screen the more daylight Thomas gets and he doesn’t need much. Kuzma started well, faded and then got sat in favor of Lopez which I was fairly ‘meh’ about.

      Not that that my ‘meh’ matters, I just feel like down the stretch you either ride Zubac who was killing it or use Kuzma to at least have more than 2 options on his shot attempts (whether they fall or not). Brook has either plodding post moves that are barely effective in the first quarter or he shoots threes. Anyhow, it is what it was and I wish we had been able to pull it out. It was right there.

      • keen observer

        keen observer 7:18 AM on February 16, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        I’m guessing that this came from the front office. If Zu played well, Brook would be bought out. We’ll see.

        • MongoSlade

          MongoSlade 7:34 AM on February 16, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          Frontline shorthanded with Frye missing..

          • keen observer

            keen observer 7:56 AM on February 16, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            True. I’ve always liked Zubac’s potential and still do even in today’s NBA. He stands tall, has soft hands, finishes well and has a smooth stroke. He’s very young and I bet the front office struggles with whether to continue to develop him or if he’s just not in their vision.

            • Magicman (Editor)

              Magicman (Editor) 12:46 PM on February 16, 2018 Permalink

              That’s all great, he’s a complimentary player with a group of Perimeter athletes. That’s his ceiling.

            • keen observer

              keen observer 12:53 PM on February 16, 2018 Permalink

              Perhaps, but he turns a whopping 21 next month. Bigs take a long time to develop in the NBA and, with his skill set, he can be the rim protector we need. I also think he can stretch his shooting range. Again, he’s an infant Like I said, I have no idea what plans Magic and Rob have for him, if any, but my extremely amateur eyeballs have always liked his game. You may be right about his ceiling, but if being a quality complimentary player with a bunch of perimeter players is an essential piece for a championship team, i’m buying some Zublocka stock!

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 9:21 AM on February 16, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Aloha, Michael,

      Good stuff. Julius continues to play like a man possessed. His helter skelter bully ball is leaving bodies in its wake. He has become a very dangerous guy to guard as many defenders are finding out as elbows and bodies crash together. While I thought his on defense on Towns was excellent, he didn’t provide much rim protection and was a -17 in plus/minus, second to worst to Ingram’s -22. I thought this was one of Ingram’s poorest games defensively but I loved how he pushed the ball in transition.

      You never quite know what to expect in these last games before the All-Star break. Unfortunately, the Lakers couldn’t live up to the hope and hype and probably blew their remote chance at sneaking into the playoffs this year with the three road losses. Disappointing but not really a big deal. Lakers are still positioned to be a major player in free agency and trades going forward and their young core is one of the most promising in the league. That’s a lot of progress since Earvin and Rob took over.

      What jumps out about last night’s game and all of our games against the Timberwolves was how having an elite player like Jimmy Butler and a quality veteran like Taj Gibson make all the difference in the world closing out games. We can talk about Ingram and Kuzma showing some potential as closers but they have a long way to go to be in the class of a player like Butler. He was impressive at both ends. As talented as Towns and Wiggins are, the Lakers young talent held their own. The difference was the Wolves vets outplayed the Lakers vets. Kuzma, Thomas, and Lopez were frankly terrible.

      It was fun being able to yell ‘Zu’ every time Ivica scored last night and hopefully this will infuse him with the confidence to work his way back into the young core. Much as I love small ball, sometimes you just need size to hold your own or take an advantage. I also think much of Zubac’s success was directly attributed to Isaiah Thomas’ playmaking skills off the pick and roll, something that is not yet one of Lonzo’s strengths. But what we got from Isaiah last night was move the Cavs’ IT than the Celtics’ version, although I think much of it is still recovering from the hip and conditioning.

      Personnally, I think you can pin the last three losses on our defense. Probably missed Nance some in making smart rotations and the team in general didn’t seem to be in sync on defense. I thought there were inspiring moments on offense, especially in transition with Ingram pushing the ball, but we never seemed to be able to lock down on defense. I also think we were playing over our head without Lonzo and that finally caught up to us in our last three games. Happens to young teams. Can’t take away the great effort without Lonzo but his defense and culture changing playmaking were missed.

      Frankly, I like the Lakers personnel and financial position better than the Timberwolves for several reasons. First, while I love Wiggins and Towns, neither has shown promise as a two-way player whereas I see Ingram and Ball as both potentially being elite two-way players. Throw in Kuzma, Randle, Hart, Zubac, and Bryant and I think the Lakers have a potentially superior offensive and defensive roster. They just need the upgrade for which they’re perfectly positioned to separate themselves from pretenders like the Timberwolves.

      Watching the impact that Butler has had against the Lakers started me wondering whether I would rather have Paul George and say Klay Thompson or Paul George and a healthy Isaiah Thomas, Julius Randle, and Nerlens Noel. There’s no doubt we need a superstar to lean on in the clutch and I think Paul George is the perfect elte player to fulfill that role for the next decade along with our young core. If Lonzo, Brandon, Kyle, and Josh have the upside I think they do at both ends of the court, then the Lakers may be smart to be patient and use the cap space for a second star for a trio of second tier stars who could make the team bettter in the long term.

      Bottom line, I go into the All-Star break pleased with where we are as a team and the job done by the front office and coaching staff. I’m excited to see how we play the second half of the season. The week off is exactly what the team needs to regroup and refocus themselves on the taking the game to another level for the rest of the season. I would love to see us finish 15-10 over the remaining 25 games. I would love to see Lonzo rack up a few more triple doubles and Isaiah prove he can be the elite player he was with the Celtics. But most importantly, I want to see the Lakers get back to playing great defense. Go, Lakers!

  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 2:55 PM on February 12, 2018 Permalink  

    Pretty Insane 

    I wonder if Lavar understands how the NBA works. Will there come a time when the circus just isn’t worth it?

    Donatas Urbonas
    Donatas Urbonas
    @Urbodo
    LaVar Ball on his big plan how he’s going to bring Lonzo, Melo and Gelo to one NBA team: “Lonzo will be on his 3rd year and I want let every NBA team know, that Lonzo is not going to resign with the Lakers, but will go to any team, that will take all of my three boys.”

     
    • DJ2KB24

      DJ2KB24 4:06 PM on February 12, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Right after we win the Chip, lol!

    • John M.

      John M. 4:17 PM on February 12, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      That’s over the line. He’s more likely to get all 3 blacklisted. About time Lonzo has a talk with him, unless Lonzo agrees…

      • Magicman (Editor)

        Magicman (Editor) 4:36 PM on February 12, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        This buffoon is over his skies, now John.

        Took a while. Here we are.

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 4:43 PM on February 12, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Dad’s going to have realize there is coming a point when his boys will want to make their own decisions. Lonzo will be 21 by then and LaVar is not his agent. Just his father.

      • Magicman (Editor)

        Magicman (Editor) 4:55 PM on February 12, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        In a media spat, if you lose to Trump, and it makes you look less rational than him…you’ve lost all credibility.

        He should have let it go, Tom. He was never going to beat Trump playing Trump’s game and he fell into the trap like a Fly in a Spiderweb.

    • mud

      mud 5:08 PM on February 12, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      pretty meaningless.

  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 11:13 PM on February 11, 2018 Permalink  

    Sigh…. 

    Kamenetzky Brothers
    Kamenetzky Brothers
    @KamBrothers
    Thursday hot take: How could the Cavaliers be stupid enough to make a trade that gives the Lakers enough space to sign LeBron???!!!

    Sunday hot take: How could the Lakers be stupid enough to make a trade that will keep LeBron in Cleveland???!!!

    AK

     
  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 10:48 PM on January 26, 2018 Permalink  

    8 of 10 

    Aloha,
    We have now won 8 of the last 10. And a big part of that has been the excellent play of Randle and Clarkson. They both had solid games again today. I’m hoping we keep them. Cousins tearing his Achilles is a perfect example of why you don’t trade for cap space. Like I’ve maintained, if you have good players on reasonable contracts they can be traded if need be. Plus you want solid trade assets Incase a star player does come on the market. Clarkson is on a reasonable contract for his skill level. And with the money crunch this summer Randle is not going to be offered a huge contract. Let’s see if we can get one star first and worry about the 2nd if we need too.

     
    • keen observer

      keen observer 6:42 AM on January 27, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I believe that a vast majority of Lakers Nation is in agreement with on on Ju and JC. They are becoming young veterans, still a few years away from their primes. I feel real bad fore Boogie though. I wonder if Luol Deng’s contract would fit snugly into the Pellie’s Injury Exception (if they can still get one this late in the season). Would it be worth giving them a 2021 1st round pick? I think so.

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

        Jamie Sweet (Local Ne'er-Do-Well) 12:17 PM on January 27, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Very interesting notion, Keen, I’d be waaaaay into that. Gives them some re-stock, a vetern [player to help them down the stretch run. Deng is a swiss army knife and would pair well with AD…I’d love it if something like this happened.

        • Magicman (Editor)

          Magicman (Editor) 12:20 PM on January 27, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          Once you designate a player for IR, they have to stay there until the end of the season.

          No one can trade for Boogie.

          • keen observer

            keen observer 2:05 PM on January 27, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            It’s past the January 15th date to get the injured player exception. Never mind.

      • Magicman (Editor)

        Magicman (Editor) 12:19 PM on January 27, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        He’s on IR keen, he can’t be traded until he comes off.

        Or in this case becomes a UFA.

  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 10:55 PM on January 23, 2018 Permalink  

    Rookie Show Down? 

    Aloha

    Life is beautiful when you beat the Celts. Just some random thoughts.

    The Tatum vs Kuzma showdown was called off when Tatum didn’t show up. There are a lot of games left, Simmons shouldn’t start practicing his ROY speach just yet. Kuz has his legs back.

    Randle out played All star Horford with 14 and 14 and tough physical play and we want to trade this guy? Go figure.

    This was the most lopsided one point game I’ve ever seen. I guess missing 15 free throws will do that. We should have won by double figures.

    Clarkson was good again. 22 points and great in the clutch. And we want to trade this guy? Go figure.

    Nance was also good on D and missed a double double by one rebound. And we want to trade this guy? Go figure.

    BI is a very good defender for his age. He really slowed down Kyrie down the stretch. That’s why I think he could play the 2. With that length he’s hard to shake and can really challenge.

    Add a max guy this summer but keep this group together. They can be special.

     
    • Worthy42

      Worthy42 4:30 AM on January 24, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      My name is Bob, and I endorse this post.

    • keen observer

      keen observer 8:13 AM on January 24, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Build it and they will come.

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 8:20 AM on January 24, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      You have to think that the last three games has to have Magic and Rob rethinking dumping Randle, Clarkson, and Nance for cap space. Time to focus on which ONE superstar we want to sign this summer.. Like Michael said, “Go figure!”

      • Seely_Iggy (Director)

        Seely_Iggy (Director) 11:52 AM on January 24, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        I really think that’s what we need right now. Just that one superstar and keep our young talented group intact.

      • mud

        mud 12:46 PM on January 24, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Magic and Rob are playing chess.

        bloggers think they are playing checkers…

  • Michael H (Editor)

    Michael H (Editor) 12:06 AM on January 10, 2018 Permalink  

    Trade Randle? Really? 

    I was looking at what Randle has done since becoming a starter and it’s impressive. 17.5ppg 10.2 rebounds 3.4 assists with solid defense in only 27.4 minutes. Paul George one of the guys we covet has 20ppg 5.5 remounts 3.1 assists in 36.6 minutes yet we want to move Randle to make room him and another. Doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. Randle is still young and developing while George is pretty much who is going to be.

    I have been waiting all year to see Brook and Julius together and it was really good tonight. If you pair Randle with a shooting big he’s very good. Earlier in the year when Kuz and Julius were coming off the bench together we had the best bench in the league.

    Ingram’s the real deal and I think that Ball and Kuz are as well. So why not keep Randle and let them grow together. It doesn’t matter if he starts or comes off the bench you can still get him 30+ minutes like Lamar. I would move Clarkson and Nance if it meant keeping Randle. I hope Magic is paying attention.

     
    • Michael H (Editor)

      Michael H (Editor) 12:30 AM on January 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      My rotation next year
      Lonzo Pg
      Avery Bradley SG
      Cousins C
      Ingram SF
      PF Kuzma
      Randle PF/C
      Clarkson SG/PG/SF
      Hart SF/SG
      Corey Joseph PG
      Tomas Bryant C/PF

      Money is going to be tight and Bradley will not get max money. Stretch Deng and use the MLE on Joseph. This is a better team then what we would be stripping the team to fit 2 max players.

    • Worthy42

      Worthy42 4:43 AM on January 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I 100% endorse this post. I would much rather build a team from youth than bring in “stars” from somewhere else. Let ’em play and learn.

      • p ang

        p ang 6:52 AM on January 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        That line of thinking would have prevented trading for Kareem.

        • Worthy42

          Worthy42 8:58 AM on January 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          Yeah, also I am not a time traveller. Here and now is my focus.

      • keen observer

        keen observer 6:55 AM on January 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        I endorse this post as well, without Clarkson, and with a better but cheap backup point guard. We’re all seeing the same thing (except for those who don’t care for Lonzo Ball for some weird reasons). If Randle is moved, it means that Magic is seeing something or knows something not available to the public.

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 8:13 AM on January 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Can’t trade Randle for just cap space unless the Lakers have inside info on free agents coming to LA. Lonzo and Randle had team high +33 plus/minus last night. I know Luke was on Julius for a couple of bonehead plays but his energy combined with Lonzo’s is a big part of what makes this team so exciting. Just hoping Julius keeps playing like this. It will either mean Lakers rethink their ‘grand plan’ or the value we get back for Randle goes up. It’s silly to think Clarkson and Nance have more trade value than Julius. I would have no problem with Lakers signing only one elite free agent and keeping youth but it’s not going to happen. Magic and Rob are not going to give up their dream of two superstars next summer.

      It’s a shame Randle missed his rookie year and his contract has become a road block to his staying in purple and gold. People always talk about unicorns like Porzingis but Randle in his own way is also a unicorn. There is no power forward in the league who can deal with Randle’s quickness and fury. Yes, he still makes dumb plays at time but he is still only 23-years old, can impact the game at both ends of the court, can play and defend multiple positions. Main concern would be his fit next to many centers because of his inability at this time to spread the floor. He does fit well with Brook and could conceivably fit well with Cousins because they can spread the floor. Going to hate seeing him traded away. Maybe with the Thunder struggling, we’ll get a chance to trade him for Paul George.

      The comparison of Randle and George in interesting but nobody is likely to prefer Randle over George. You can cherry pick stats but the reality is PG is a proven elite player at both ends of the court and much better than anybody the Lakers have on their roster. The question is whether PG is worth Randle, Clarkson, and Nance. Unfortunately, the answer is likely yes, especially the way Clarkson has been playing of late, which reminds me of his fading second half last year. Bottom line, Randle, Clarkson, and Nance for Paul George is still the deal that works for the Lakers and Thunder. That’s a deal the Lakers and Thunder should both be eager to make. Bird in the hand is worth it for Lakers. Clears the space to go for Cousins this summer.

    • tate793

      tate793 1:02 PM on January 10, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Seems like Kyle Kuzma has regressed since being moved back to the bench. Rewarding-on-the’court play with more playing time, or allowing play-per-performance can be a slippery slope.

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