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Podcast! In praise of D’Angelo Russell, a look at free agency, and interviews that should happen

Posted by on Jun 27, 2015 in Kamenetzky Brothers Land O'Lakers Podcast, Lakers Analysis, Lakers Audio, Mitch Kupchak, Opinion, Podcast | 0 comments

Big or small? Big or small? Big or small?

That was the question in the weeks leading up to Thursday’s NBA Draft, and in the end the Lakers surprised a bunch of people — and royally screwed the Philadelphia 76ers — by selecting Ohio State point guard D’Angelo Russell with the second pick.

Good idea? We think so, break down why, and what about Russell appealed to the Lakers when push came to shove.

Plus, Larry Nance Jr. at 27 (and a most regrettable social media moment), Anthony Brown and 34, and what the new stable of Lakers means for their free agent search going forward. Mitch Kupchak says they’ll look to bolster the frontcourt. Does that mean LaMarcus Aldridge? Greg Monroe? Kevin Love?

Plus, Mitch interviews Robin Lopez!!!*

*Sort of… 

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PODCAST! The NBA draft, coaching carousel, Kevin Love, Caitlyn Jenner, NBA Finals

Posted by on Jun 3, 2015 in Byron Scott, Jim Buss, Kamenetzky Brothers Land O'Lakers Podcast, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Mitch Kupchak, Opinion, Podcast | 1 comment

It’s been a while, but we’re back in front of the podcast microphones! The NBA draft is a few weeks away, prospects are visiting El Segundo, and the 2014-2015 season is four-seven games away from crowning a champion. (Spoiler alert! It won’t be the Lakers.)

The show can be heard by clicking on the module, and a list of talking points can be found below. Among the high points:

  • OUR TOP STORY: The Lakers own the second overall pick, which provides them a lot of options. They can select a big. They can select a guard. They can select a Porzingas. They can trade the pick. What’s the best route moving foward?
  • HEADLINES: Lot o’ coaching hires and fires of late. What to make of Scott Skiles, Alvin Gentry and Fred Hoiberg joining, respectively, Orlando, New Orleans and Chicago, along with the Bulls’ dismissal of Tom Thibodeau? And should the Lakers make a play for the newly unemployed Thibs?
  • OUR ALMOST TOP STORY: For the first time in eons, Kevin Love addressed the media since injuring his shoulder. Amid constant speculation about an impending departure from Cleveland, the power forward maintained his company line of remaining a Cavalier next season. Is he relaying sincere thoughts, or proactively putting an exit strategy in motion?
  • PERSON OF INTEREST: Caitlyn Jenner, formerly Bruce Jenner, is the cover story of the upcoming issue of Vanity Fair, and will receive the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at next month’s ESPY’s. Both developments, along with Jenner’s very public transgender story, have raised awareness of transgender issues, but the ensuing discussion is inevitably complex, and for many, inevitably confusing.
  • OUR ALMOST, ALMOST TOP STORY: The NBA Finals are two days away from commencing! The Golden State Warriors are rightly the heavy favorite, but the Cavs have LeBron, which makes all bets feel off. Could LBJ actually lead an upset for the ages?

Click above to play, or just download the show here. Hope you enjoy it. To subscribe to the podcast via iTunes, click here. You can also find us on TuneIn.com by heading here.

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PODCAST!!! Rajon Rondo, LeBron v. Riles, Late Night TV, Tebow, and Pop loves BK

Posted by on Apr 24, 2015 in Jeanie Buss, Jeremy Lin, Jerry Buss, Jim Buss, Kamenetzky Brothers Land O'Lakers Podcast, Kevin Ollie, Kobe Bryant, Lakers Analysis, Mitch Kupchak, Podcast, San Antonio Spurs | 1 comment

It’s been a while, but we’re back! The Lakers’ season is mercifully over and a (thus far) very fun playoffs are NBA underway. For the time being, ain’t much to talk about in Laker Land, but that won’t stop us from talking. The show can be heard by clicking on the module and a list of talking points can be found below. Among the highlights:

  • Our top story: Rajon Rondo’s disastrous stint in Dallas has now culminated in a “back injury” that’s all but officially ended his time as a Maverick. This fiasco comes on the heels of a steady decline in health, production and reputation. But in the eyes of some Lakers fans, that just makes the point guard a cost-effective free agent and inevitable redemption story ripe for the plucking. We explain why this is a terrible idea.
  • We take a stroll through the biggest NBA headlines. Does the Clippers’ Game 2 collapse reflect a doomed playoff run, even if they manage to take out the Spurs? Pat Riley throws shade at LeBron. Scott Brooks is out in OKC.
  • Our Not Sports Story: We examine the state of late night TV with David Letterman and Jon Stewart on the verge of exiting, and industry folks criticizing the medium’s new Fallon-ized direction.
  • Our Person of Interest: Tim Tebow is back, baby! What’s in store for the polarizing quarterback should he stick with the Eagles, and why does such a seemingly nice guy divide people so much in the first place?
  • AAK!!! What movie are we most looking forward to seeing the sequel? Can Gregg Popovich’s compliment to BK possibly be topped? What is each K Bros’ go-to lunch of choice?
  • Recommended Listening: Radiolab’s fascinating and highly entertaining look at the modern day relevance of the novel Don Quixote.

 

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Podcast!!! Byron, Jim, Jeanie, and Mitch get ranked, Durant and Westbrook’s future, NFL and domestic violence, and “Final Four” badasses

Posted by on Mar 31, 2015 in Kamenetzky Brothers Land O'Lakers Podcast, Lakers Analysis, Lakers Audio, Opinion, Podcast |

We’re back!

It’s a busy hour-plus, starting with a less-than-stellar evaluation of the Lakers’ front office, including hoops execs, ownership, and head coach. Do the Lakers deserve the scorn of ESPN’s Forecast rankings? From there, it’s a look around the league, a check on two of the NFL’s more notorious names, big TV news, and AAK!

Among the talking points…

  • LeBron James isn’t just one of the NBA’s great leaders… he’s among the best in the world, according to Fortune.
  • Durant and Westbrook. One out for the year, one putting up MVP numbers. What does this mean for OKC, and maybe the Lakers?
  • After seventeen years and zero requests, NBC is bringing back the sitcom “Coach.” You’re asking “Why?” So are we.
  • Our “Person of Interest” is dubiously shared this show by Greg Hardy and Ray McDonald, two NFL players mired in domestic violence
  • AAK! Final four themed.  “Final Four” cinematic badasses. “Final Four” actors. (And even with all my honorable mentions, AK managed to forget Bill Murray on that list, for which he’ll never forgive himself.)  “Final Four” condiments. “Final Four” non-family member ‘Simpsons’ characters.
  • Recommended listening includes three Marc Maron podcasts, and a Sam Simon/Barack Obama interview. And here’s a link to our ESPN podcast with actor Danny Trejo (“Machete,” “Desperado,” “Heat”), in which we cover his incredible career, prison boxing, general badassery, and so much more.
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What the Lakers can learn from the Knicks (seriously)

Posted by on Mar 13, 2015 in Lakers Analysis, Opinion | 1 comment

There’s a narrative that states the Lakers “can’t afford” to rebuild as another, less glamorous team might. They’re the Lakers, after all. Fans wouldn’t tolerate it. Season ticket holders would abandon ship. The stars would stop showing. Sponsors would revolt. Media partners would freak out. Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together, mass hysteria

L.A., a city famous for its entertainment options, would move on to other things.

It’s compelling stuff, playing well into the championship image the team and fans are so rightly proud of.

It’s also completely untrue.

Sure, if the Lakers suffered through another couple seasons like this one, it would be embarrassing. Fans would be angry. Stars wouldn’t line the courtside seats. The rest of the NBA would point its collective finger towards El Segundo and laugh. But do you know what would really happen? Absolutely nothing of long term consequence. And all the evidence you need for visits Staples tonight. The New York Knicks have been an acrid, smoldering tire fire for most of the new millennium. And yet going back to 2001, they’ve never had a year where the Garden was filled to less than 96 percent capacity. Forbes values them at $2.5 billion, which is far less than they’d sell for on the open market.

The Knicks are, and will remain, a money printing machine, despite a tradition and track record that doesn’t approach what the Lakers have.

Last week, I was talking to a season ticket holder I’ve grown to know over the years. Big money, ungodly expensive seats. He’s had them for years, and he’s not giving them up, even knowing the Lakers could suck for a couple more years. Nor does he know anyone who will, because they’ll get snatched up in a heartbeat and can never be had back. In a world where live broadcast rights have never been more valuable, media partners aren’t going anywhere, either. If other sponsors ducked out for a couple years, they’d be back (perhaps paying higher rates) as soon as the team is good again. People who stop watching now, entertainment glitterati and salt of the earth alike, come right back when there’s something to see. That’s how this works.

The moral of the story? Don’t confuse a hit to the collective purple and gold ego with actual damage. That kind of thinking is what gets teams to do stupid things. The best way for the Lakers to make themselves relevant again (assuming you buy the supposition that they’re not, which I don’t) is to build something sustainable, by which the team can contend — legitimately contend — on a year-to-year basis. When that happens, or even appears to be really, all the heat returns.

If it takes an extra year or so to get the rebuild right, so be it. Panicky moves designed to win summer TV broadcasts and brochures for season ticket holders don’t do much good when the games actually start. There have been signs the Lakers understand this better now than they did before. Mitch Kupchak speaks openly about not mortgaging the future to try and send Kobe out a winner, for example. They’ve used language, at least periodically, talking about how it could take a couple years to get this thing back on track. But if the Lakers can’t shake the star-(bleep)er mentality as the primary means of roster construction, they’ll run into real problems.

Which is a shame, because assuming you believe the organization is still committed to winning — there is zero evidence to the contrary — the reality is they have all the time they need to do it right.

Just look at New York.

 

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