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  • Magicman (Editor)

    Magicman (Editor) 12:31 PM on November 18, 2018 Permalink |  


  • Magicman (Editor)

    Magicman (Editor) 12:16 PM on November 18, 2018 Permalink |  


  • LakerTom (Publisher) 11:46 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink |  

    Josh Hart on Lakers struggles on defense against Magic: ‘They kicked my f**king a*s’ 

    “They kicked my f*****g a*s,” Hart said. “That’s personal.”

    Hart is generally regarded as the Lakers’ best perimeter defender — and one of their best on the inside, too. But he was the first to say he didn’t have it against Orlando.

    “I’m just frustrated with how I played defensively,” he said. “I let these guys down, and we’ve just got to take this one to the chin and try to finish this road trip with two wins.”

    Hart isn’t wrong in his assessment. The Lakers were never worse defensively than when he was on the floor on Saturday night, allowing the Magic to score at a rate (defensive rating) that would equal 139.5 points per 100 possessions during Hart’s minutes. They were also never better than when Hart sat, giving up a defensive rating of 112.9 while he was on the pine.

    And while Oram is correct to note that Hart “is generally regarded as the Lakers’ best perimeter defender,” or at least one of their best, this has been a flawed narrative for a while now that isn’t really backed up by stats or the eye test.

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 11:48 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Good first step to see Josh take the blame rather than blaming Chandler. Let’s see him adjust on the court and play some real perimeter defense.

      And enough with this narrative that Hart is a great perimeter defender. Numbers and eye test have proven that to be incorrect.

  • LakerTom (Publisher) 11:01 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink |  

    Great opportunity to watch the Lakers' point guard of the future play this afternoon! 

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 11:17 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Would still love to see Luke bring Bonga back to the varsity when we return from this trip. His size, length, and quickness could have help defensively against the Magic, whose quickness was too much for the Lakers guards or centers to handle. Neither Hart nor Ball have the length or quickness to prevent Augustine from torching them. I think Bonga’s size, length, and athleticism could have helped.

      It may be time for the Lakers to start seriously considering whether Ball is the team’s long term solution at the point. I’ve been so disappointed in Lonzo’s performance this year. He’s had Rondo’s suspension and now broken hand gifting him with opportunity but he seems to have seriously regressed from last season at both ends of the court. May be time to accelerate Bonga’s learning process.

      Truth is both Lonzo and Rondo have major issues stretching the floor and defending at the point. Bonga is raw but potentially cold be the answer. Now is as good a time as any to start finding out. Going to be watching the SB Lakers game after the varsity hopefully redeems themselves. Another couple of stinkers like last night and Luke will be justifiably on the hot seat again.

      Know I’m ranting but that game last night was one of the most disappointing Lakers games I can remember watching. Very disheartening and discouraging.

  • LakerTom (Publisher) 10:27 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink |  

    So much for the Lakers ‘dominating’ traditional center duo! 

    • MongoSlade

      MongoSlade 10:30 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      They definitely got outplayed by Vuc but you can’t go small against him either.
      Dude just dominated..sometimes you just gotta do like Pedro said…
      Tip your cap and call him Daddy…lol

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 10:41 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Vucevic took McGee and Chandler to school and you can bet other teams are going to do the same thing. Nikola showing he could be top five center if he keeps this up. Hard to play with a traditional center when the opposing center can stretch the floor with wide open threes and beat your traditional centers off the dribble if they close out. Poor effort by McGee and Chandler especially last night.

      This is the type of game where Julius Randle and his power and quickness could have helped. Unfortunately, all we have when we go small are Kyle Kuzma and Michael Beasley as small ball centers, which means teams are going to realize that the way to beat the Lakers is force their traditional centers to the bench. Lakers will need to figure out how they’re going to play small because this is going to be an issue.

      The only way the Lakers could have stopped Vucevic would have been with good team defense, which would have meant players rotating and helping, of which the Lakers just did not do. The Magic’s ability to beat our perimeter matador defense and the Lakers’ centers unwillingness to help (that’s you, Tyson Chandler) made it impossible.

      Lakers need to realize that they’re like the Warriors now that they have LeBron. Every team is going to bring their best and every player is going to try to excel on the big stage that comes with LeBron and the Lakers. Luke and the staff did little to adjust to how the Magic dismantled their defense. It will be a test of character how the team comes out this afternoon after this embarrassing show.

      • MongoSlade

        MongoSlade 10:47 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        The so-called “death lineup” with Lebron at center wasn’t gonna stop what Vuc did last night.

        • LakerTom (Publisher) 11:08 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          Probably not because LeBron wasn’t in the mood to play defense tonight. Now if he played D like against the Blazers…but it might have were the Lakers able to isolate LeBron on Vucevic with four three point shooters on the floor. And LeBron could certainly have defended Vucevic’s threes better than JaVale and Tyson.

          My point is the Lakers still have not fixed their center problem. More and more teams are going try to expose JaVale and Tyson by going small or positionless and making our traditional centers defend out to the three point line. That’s a serious weakness the Lakers need to fix somehow at the trade deadline.

          There are still lots of situations and games where the Lakers will need to go small. Either they add somebody or they go with LeBron because Kuz and Beasley are not the solution and teams can force McGee and Chandler to the bench and force us to go small.

          • MongoSlade

            MongoSlade 11:30 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            Vuc made two 3’s.
            That wasn’t the big problem in this game.
            You go small and he’s just gonna do even more damage inside.

            But beyond that….how many changes do you wanna make to this roster at this stage of the season? Who are you realistically gonna bring in to make this huge turnaround you’re looking for? Nobody on the perimeter is staying in front of guys (it ain’t just Hart). JaVale played the same minutes as Tyson but he gets no blame? At some point you gotta play the hand you’re dealt and coach em up. Can’t just flip over the Monopoly board cuz it ain’t going your way.

            And we can’t keep waiting for Lebron to play significant minutes at center. There’s a reason why he’s never done it. I’ve been saying way back from his 1st stint in Cleveland that he should play more from the post; fact is that he just doesn’t wanna do it. We point to that stint in the Denver game where it was successful for a few minutes but never acknowledge that Luke had to take him out for an extended rest right before he deployed him just to get him ready. You gonna do that in the 4th quarter of a playoff game? Of course not…he barely comes off the floor in the 2nd half of postseason games. You lose more than you gain.

            • LakerTom (Publisher) 11:44 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink

              I think finding somebody who can play small ball center may be our biggest priority before the trade deadline. While it’s obviously better to get the lineups and rotations set as soon as possible and while I’m sure we can play better than we did last night, I think we’re going to see lots of teams adjust their approach to playing the Lakers after watching this game. In many ways, it’s the same story as the Raptors game. Our defense got abused badly and early and the games got away. While there will always be some of these games, I suspect the problem is going to rear its ugly head more than expected. There will be some major changes at midseason if this continues, which could even include LeBron.

              Tonight’s game at Miami could be a bell weather. We have to deal with a very tough traditional center and a team that also plays a lot of small ball. The question will be whether or not McGee or Chandler on a back-to-back where they were humiliated can matchup when the Heat go small. I suspect that could be an issue again tonight. I suspect the next time we play the Blazers will see a lot of John Collins out at the 3-point line. Lakers have not yet solved the center problem -- or the perimeter defensive problem -- and together those are major vulnerabilities.

            • MongoSlade

              MongoSlade 11:57 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink

              Collins…. 0.6 3pt attempts per game.

              If I’m Luke, I’m considering changing what I’m doing when I’m playing a lineup with Ibaka or Horford who can seriously hurt you from outside. But there just aren’t a whole lotta lineups across the league who can force you into doing that…Vuc did the vast majority of his damage from inside last night. John Collins shooting less than one 3 pointer a game shouldn’t be a problem…

            • MongoSlade

              MongoSlade 12:06 PM on November 18, 2018 Permalink

              lol…my bad…you meant Zach Collins.
              He’s a lil bit better than John from the arc…

            • Magicman (Editor)

              Magicman (Editor) 12:14 PM on November 18, 2018 Permalink

              Hard to see the Heat on a back to back being a yardstick.

            • LakerTom (Publisher) 12:15 PM on November 18, 2018 Permalink

              It’s the threat of a big behind the 3-point line as much as the number of threes attempted that changes the dynamic of the defense by pulling the traditional big out of the paint, which opens up the paint for guys like Augustine and Fournier to abuse us with layups. Last night, we did exactly what the Magic wanted. Our bigs came out halfway because of the threat which made them unable to stop the three or the layups.

              I do agree the big challenge will come against teams who have centers who really stretch the floor like the Celtics but there’s a whole new class of centers who can shoot the three coming. Guys who can punish you inside and outside ala AD, Embiid, and Horford. Lakers sill seeking answers on how to defend teams and chances are it’s going to get worse before it gets better.

            • MongoSlade

              MongoSlade 12:26 PM on November 18, 2018 Permalink

              The other problem is this…Embiid, Ibaka, Horford, AD…those dudes are gonna play 30-35 minutes a game, more in the post-season. No way we can go small/positionless for that long as currently constructed. Luke’s gotta figure out how to make it work. Closing out halfway on a 3pt shooter is useless; better off staying home and just give up the shot.

            • LakerTom (Publisher) 12:58 PM on November 18, 2018 Permalink

              Unfortunately, that’s when 3 is greater than 2.

  • Magicman (Editor)

    Magicman (Editor) 9:47 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink |  


    • Magicman (Editor)

      Magicman (Editor) 9:49 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Lol smh.

      You give him a playoff roster, he’s probably getting in and you’re gonna fire him.

      Never change Sacramento. Lol.

    • MongoSlade

      MongoSlade 10:20 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Cain’t get right….

  • Magicman (Editor)

    Magicman (Editor) 9:45 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink |  


  • Magicman (Editor)

    Magicman (Editor) 9:40 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink |  


    • Magicman (Editor)

      Magicman (Editor) 9:43 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Luke dared Nik to slice and dice. He obliged.

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 9:49 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Frankly, there may not be a worse duo defending the pick and roll than Hart and Chandler. As good as Hart is defending bigs in the post, he’s just plain unable to keep anybody in front of him. And what we saw tonight was the likely the ‘real’ Tyson Chandler who looked every day of his 36-years. Wouldn’t leave Vucevic to help anybody and couldn’t even slow him down when he did get the ball. Shameful performance by both of them. And don’t even get me started on Lonzo Ball’s zero points or Kyle Kuzma’s terrible decision making and inability to just take the shot when he’s open. Just flush it and move on.

    • MongoSlade

      MongoSlade 10:19 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Truth be told (and I have absolutely no idea how this is calculated..lol) Hart is about 8pts better than Lonzo in defensive rating and slightly better in defensive win share (whatever that is). Rondo has the best rating outta all the heavy rotation players. Doesn’t look like we have a single player in the top 50. Long story short…it ain’t good.

  • Jamie Sweet (Local Ne'er-Do-Well)

    Jamie Sweet (Local Ne'er-Do-Well) 12:38 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink |  

    5 Observations 

    Outside of the 1st quarter and Brandon’s really solid and complete game there wasn’t much to like about this game. Oh, hey, Moe Wagner got his NBA debut and Svi was 2-3 in garbage time. Cool.

    -Rondo being out a month+ will be interesting.
    -Kuz needs to either find his consistent offense better or defend better.
    -Josh Hart will not get calls going 1 on 3.
    -Lance Stephenson needs to play a little more.
    -Chandler really depended on Rondo getting him in the right spots.

    • MongoSlade

      MongoSlade 9:37 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      We’ve seen this before under Luke..show some progress then backslide. I thought LeBron’s presence would change it but maybe he’s been infected as well. Hopefully it’s just an aberration and they get back on track this afternoon. Flush it and move forward.

      BI played great even when sliding over to the point. Luke had a problem staggering the minutes in the 3rd and that’s when Augustin went wild to blow the game open. Hard to have your starting SG be your backup PG at the same time..guy’s gotta rest at some point.

      • Magicman (Editor)

        Magicman (Editor) 9:45 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Could be LeBron getting infected to, you know what they say, old habits die hard.

        A lot of co-factors.

        Kuz put it out there about being steady as youngsters on back to backs, when you stink it up own it and move on.

    • LakerTom (Publisher) 10:07 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      R-A-N-T A-B-O-U-T L-A-K-E-R-S R-E-G-R-E-S-S-I-O-N

      That’s what struck me about last night’s game. Regression. What happened to the great young players we had last year?

      Lonzo is a shell of his last year self. He’s totally lost his confidence in his shot. Last year he blocked almost a shot per game. This year he has 2 blocks. Zero points and four assists? I’ve been his biggest supporter from day 1 but my confidence in him has gone the same way as his confidence in his shot.

      Kuzma is lost. Gone is the smooth scorer who could shoot from deep or attack closeouts. The guy we have now can’t pull the trigger on the three when he’s open and can’t finish at the rim without pushing off his defender and getting called for a foul. Without his offense, he’s not an NBA starter.

      Josh Hart. Anybody who thinks this guy is a great or even plus defender was left with his pants on the floor last night. How many times in a row can you get beaten off the dribble before you decide to not to overplay your man? Josh may be a fighter in the post but he’s the worst defender on the team on the perimeter. A couple of steals in the passing lane each game don’t make up for his matador defense.

      Brandon Ingram played best of the kids but did nothing to show he could fit with LeBron or make a three point shot. Can’t see New Orleans giving up AD for a player whose game is isolation long 2-point shots or 1 on 3 drives hoping to get a foul. Maybe the Memphis Grizzlies or some other ‘old school’ team that hates 3-point shots and thinks 2 is greater than 3 will want to trade for him.

      Truth is that one of the team’s problems is none of their four young players has shown signs of taking their games to the next level. Truth is they’ve all regressed from last season. You can say LeBron has held them back and taken away touches but in the end, the blame is on them and their coaches.

      • MongoSlade

        MongoSlade 10:28 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Can’t argue with too much of that. But I actually like BI utilizing his length by taking those short jumpers from the elbow ala KD especially when he has guards trying to defend him.

        • LakerTom (Publisher) 10:47 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          I agree but bypassing those wide open threes to take a contested two is not the right formula for winning in today’s NBA. Nor is attacking two bigger and longer bigs in the paint. Let’s hope pride sets in and we come out and play to our potential this afternoon.

        • MongoSlade

          MongoSlade 10:50 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          50% on those elbow jumpers is still better than 32% from the arc.

          • LakerTom (Publisher) 11:34 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            That would be true if he shot 60% on those shots but he doesn’t. 21.7% of his shots are tightly defended twos and he’s only shooting 45.2% on those shots. 16.1% of his shots are open twos and he’s only shooting 3% on those. That’s a long way from 60%.


            It’s also the fact that most of those shots are coming from isolation where the rest of the team is just standing around watching. That means the opportunity to hit open cutters or spot up shooters is close to nil. And not a good fit with LeBron.

          • MongoSlade

            MongoSlade 11:49 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            Here’s my thing….I’m not really about trying to shoe-horn a guy into doing things he just ain’t proficient at doing. The guy is shooting 31% from the arc this season and 32% for his career. Those aren’t numbers that make the 3>2 argument feasible. He’s much more confident in his iso & midrange game and is more likely to improve in those areas. He’s a good enough ball handler and playmaker to deliver the ball to cutters & open shooters especially if they don’t just “stand around”. Take those talents and build around em.

            • LakerTom (Publisher) 11:54 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink

              I do agree with you on that, Mongo. I just think it’s becoming obvious that Ingram is not a great fit around LeBron because he needs the ball. Combine that with the reality that he’s our best trading chip and it’s easy to see he is not going to be with the team long term. Not unless he proves he can be that third superstar, which is only going to get more difficult when we add a second superstar. Just don’t see BI being last man standing even though he’s likely the most talented now and in the future. Tough spot to be in and, like you say, we just have to do the best we can. Against some teams, he would be better coming off the bench despite Hart and Kuzma’s weaker defense. Just bummed by last night’s game and hoping to have some faith restored this afternoon.

            • MongoSlade

              MongoSlade 12:03 PM on November 18, 2018 Permalink

              And I’m not debating any of what you’re saying there. He’s our best trading piece because he has the best skillset of all the young dudes.

              I’m just more in favor of guys doing what they do best instead of trying to turn them in to something they simply aren’t. I look at how KD just flat out abused little dudes trying to stop his midrange during the playoffs and can definitely see BI doing the same thing. Might be as a Laker, might be someplace else…

  • Magicman (Editor)

    Magicman (Editor) 7:15 PM on November 17, 2018 Permalink |  


    • LakerTom (Publisher) 9:37 PM on November 17, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Kuz may have been terrible offensively but Josh Hart got beaten off the dribble and back door so many times on defense it was embarrassing. He cannot keep anybody in front of him.

      • Magicman (Editor)

        Magicman (Editor) 9:29 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Pivoting isn’t a solution either, my friend.

        Kuz priorities could turn him into Rio. Not a name from the past LeBron respects. Just saying.

      • Magicman (Editor)

        Magicman (Editor) 9:33 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Tom, are you saying Kuzma technique on D is close to Josh?!

        We have to A2D there dude.

        • LakerTom (Publisher) 10:20 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          No, I’m saying Josh’s defensive technique is as ‘poor’ as Kuzma’s. Neither of these guys is really a plus defender. Hart makes a couple of great steals in the passing lane and fights hard defending bigs in the post and Kuz gets an occasional block from behind but neither really have good defensive fundamentals. If Hart’s a better defender than Kuzma, it’s not by much. Both guys are below average.

          Josh’s is a great defender for his size in the post. He is crap as a perimeter defender. When is the last time we’ve ever seen him stay in front of his man. Instead, we saw him get beaten to the rim five times in row last night -- four times off the dribble and then finally off a back door. Why? Because he overplays trying to get steals in the passing lanes. He is grossly overrated as a defender because of his toughness in the post vs. bigs.

          I would give Chandler some of the blame as he played terrible last night. Luke may have to keep him on the bench in back-to-backs because last night he was Vucevic’s b***h and looked every day of his long 36 year career. Vucevic had his number so badly Tyson wouldn’t leave to help anybody. Of course, you could understand why Tyson did not want Vuch to get the ball because he got torched every time that happened so better to let Hart’s man score.

          As for Kuzma, I think it may be time to bench him and part of the problem is the coaching. It’s great to continue to challenge Kyle to become a better defender and playmaker but not when the kid gets so confused he doesn’t know what to do anymore when the ball comes to him. He’s now turning down wide open threes to attack two bigs in the paint. The great scorer we had last year is a shell of the player he was last year.

          Truth is neither Hart or Kuzma is likely to be a starter on next year’s Lakers unless they suddenly start playing a lot better. Last night, they both sucked.

  • Magicman (Editor)

    Magicman (Editor) 7:14 PM on November 17, 2018 Permalink |  


  • Magicman (Editor)

    Magicman (Editor) 7:13 PM on November 17, 2018 Permalink |  


  • Magicman (Editor)

    Magicman (Editor) 7:10 PM on November 17, 2018 Permalink |  


  • Magicman (Editor)

    Magicman (Editor) 7:07 PM on November 17, 2018 Permalink |  


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

      Jamie Sweet (Local Ne'er-Do-Well) 12:20 AM on November 18, 2018 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Dame/Kemba/Wal-ranked in order if we choose to trade Ball. Gotta bring back a talent of that level.

      John might not be there anymore, he’s lost a solid step and it shows big time. Honestly, I stick with Lonzo and hope he figures out how to shoot better.

  • Magicman (Editor)

    Magicman (Editor) 7:05 PM on November 17, 2018 Permalink |  


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