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Playoffs, Baby! Gearing Up For a Crazy Summer

Posted by on May 19, 2018 in Opinion, Podcast |

The Conference Finals are here, and in some ways are more interesting thanks to what happens after them, rather than during. What if Houston, now tied 1-1, goes down quickly from here on? What if the Celtics beat the Cavs (as we both think will happen)? Does that mean LeBron is gone? To Houston? To L.A. ? Could Boston, stacked with too many good players, trade Kyrie?

And what about that Houston/GSW series? Did “adjustments” happen? Or did Houston just do Houston stuff better? Are there any adjustments good enough to get Cleveland through to the Finals?

We kick around all this, plus talk a little Boogie Cousins. Is he doing this free agency thing right?


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A rough night vs. Dwight, Steve Blake trade thoughts, and more

Posted by on Feb 20, 2014 in Dwight Howard, Jordan Hill, Kobe Bryant, Lakers Analysis | 5 comments

On the odd chance some fans hadn’t yet started seeing the Lakers’ world for what it currently is, Wednesday was a stark, unpleasant, steaming plate of reality. One symbol of last season’s failure returned to Staples to a strong chorus of boos (kudos to fans in the building, who kept up the enthusiasm for heckling Dwight Howard longer than I figured, given the score) and a very strong performance. The other symbol, Steve Nash, was not in the building. The Lakers said he had an upper respiratory infection, probably because like everyone else they need a little variety and are tired of writing “nerve root irritation” on the injury sheet.

Meanwhile, as Thursday’s trade deadline approaches, the Lakers were busy with the completely unglamorous business of (hopefully) stripping the house down to the studs, selling off the fixtures, all the copper wiring, and anything else the market might absorb. First to go: Steve Blake, sent to Golden State for MarShon Brooks, Kent Bazemore, and a cleaner payroll.

And, predictably given the players available, the Lakers proceeded to get shit-canned by the visitors. Howard’s Rockets are rising in the standings, while the Lakers lost for the eighth time in 10 games and continued their frontal assault on last place in the Western Conference. That their struggles are in big picture terms properly categorized under “NBA Circle of Life” doesn’t make it any easier for fans to watch. Wednesday was as painful an evening as the Lakers have had this year, which is saying something.

A few more postgame thoughts… 

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Podcast: Lakers predictions, NBA 2013-14 season preview, GM survey, and Nick Young’s Swaggy P-ness

Posted by on Oct 26, 2013 in Dwight Howard, Kamenetzky Brothers Land O'Lakers Podcast, Kobe Bryant, Lakers Analysis, LeBron James, Miami Heat, Mike D'Antoni, Mitch Kupchak, Pau Gasol, Podcast, Royce White, Steve Blake, Steve Nash | 7 comments

The preseason, she is officially in the books, meaning the regular season is now just around the corner. What lies ahead for the Lakers, Kobe Bryant and the league as a whole? We offer oodles and oodles of prognostications, plus our usual helping of nonsense. The highlights:

  • We take a look at the latest NBA headlines. Will recent LO’L podcast guest Royce White get another chance after getting cut by the Sixers? Yao Ming makes a difference in the effort to end shark fin soup. Carmelo Anthony has a heart-to-heart with J.R. Smith about drugs. And the annual GM survey results were released. How much love did the Lakers collectively get from the front office types?
  • We take a deep look at the season ahead. Among our Lakers predictions is a biggie: Will they make playoffs? Which teams will come out of the Eastern and Western Conferences? Who will be the surprise winners come award season next April? All that, and…
  • …even more questions! How will Dwight Howard perform in Houston? Will Steve Nash or Andrew Bynum play more games this season? What should the Lakers use as the slogan for the free T-shirts given out at Staples Center? And much, much, MUCH more!
  • I accidentally invent a NSFW nickname for Nick Young.
  • Time for some #AAK! Who would we switch faces with if possible, ala “Face/Off?” What would be our career choice if not sports journalism? Given the choice between rescuing either our parents, our spouse or a busload of children from impending death, who would each of us save?
  • And finally, Sasha Vujacic has officially launched his own wine, along with the most unintentionally funny wine website ever.

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 by heading here.


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Podcast: Royce White on mental health advocacy, anxiety disorder, the NBA, music and Twitter

Posted by on Aug 6, 2013 in Kamenetzky Brothers Land O'Lakers Podcast, Kobe Bryant, Podcast, Royce White | 2 comments

It would be a challenge to name an NBA rookie who created more controversy and headlines without logging a single minute of run than Philadelphia 76ers forward Royce White. Drafted last year by the Houston Rockets, White was widely regarded as a risk because of . For the time being, the skeptics haven”t been silenced. White and the Rockets were never able to establish common ground on, and as a result, he spent the year mostly estranged from the team. It was no surprise to see White moved to Philly this summer, as Houston made space for Dwight Howard. His NBA debut remains a chapter waiting to be written.

, while admittedly fascinating, often made it unclear whether he wanted to be a professional basketball player, a mental health advocate, or whether he even knows what he wants, period. Talking directly with White, however, reveals a considerably more grounded mission statement and mindset. White clearly understands the delicate complexity for all sides. Working without a blueprint means trial and error, and also sometimes a mess. However, he”s confident about suiting up for the Sixers come fall, and seemingly more secure that any problems can be addressed on a case-by-base basis.

We spoke at length with White Monday afternoon about topics including his mental health advocacy, his NBA goals, the positive and negative aspects of Twitter, and the importance of music in his life. (I have a feeling we could have done the entire show just on John Lennon, Prince and Frank Sinatra.) You can hear the show by clicking on the module above or the link at the bottom of the post. Below is an excerpt of the conversation beginning after Brian noted how Kobe Bryant”s famous competitiveness and ferocious work ethic has been self-described, perhaps only partially tongue-in-cheek, as pathological. “Whether it”s Kobe and that kind of hyper-competitiveness or other people generally — artists, and people who have some personality attribute that”s outside the norm,” he asked. “How do you explain the difference between something like that, that”s maybe something that”s maybe an extreme version of “normal,” and something that is a disorder?”

“I think the tough thing that we have to deal with is that there may not be a difference,” responded White. “And I think in the mental health community — obviously, confidentiality is a huge piece and why there is such a disconnection between what we know about people who deal with mental heath disorders or who we know deals with them. Because of the stigma, people don”t want you to know, therefore [we] don”t know, because they have that right to privacy. But I think if you just opened up the book and could see everybody who deals with a mental health disorder, you would see a lot of people that are highly successful, like a Kobe Bryant. I went to Nike camps as a high school prospect, and I heard stories of Kobe Bryant working out until he blacks out. Right? And that”s definitely — and again, I don”t want to try and diagnose Kobe Bryant, but that definitely sounds like symptoms or traces of an OCD. Just straight obsession with the game or with success or being better or whatever the idea in his head that he wants, he”s obsessed with getting it. And that doesn”t have to be a bad thing. It can be a dangerous thing, obviously, if you”re blacking out, but if he can do it, he can do it. Right?

“But I use myself more when I talk about being hyper-competitive. When I first started with music, I remember there was this place called Uptown in Minneapolis and my friend had a studio there. This is right when I left the University of Minnesota and took that time off. I stayed there for six weeks straight in a room that had no windows. Basically you can”t tell what time of day it is in there. I was there six weeks straight and I probably lost 25 pounds. I wasn”t eating normally. But I was happy. I was happy, because I was fine tuning my ability to produce something that I love, which is music. And the crazy thing is — (laughs) crazy, I should probably change that word  – the ironic thing is I saw my family practitioner who first diagnosed me with anxiety, and she said that during that six week period, that was the best that I ever looked, in terms of color and in my face and my attention and how I was acting with my anxiety, because obviously she can pick up on things just on how you”re acting physically. She said it was the best I”d ever looked, which is really weird, because you would think that six weeks in a studio with no food and irregular sleep, you would look terrible. But that”s just not the way the brain looks. The brain is a very complex thing. It”s the most complex organ in the body.”

Thus, I noted, one man”s “obsessive” can be another man”s “healthy,” which only further complicates the issue.

“Right,” agreed White. “And one thing that makes somebody healthy could kill somebody else. Some people obsess about things and it kills them. With drugs (for example). It can be fatal. That”s why you have to pay attention to it. The first thing is, you have to pay attention. And the second thing, you have to genuinely care enough to say that you”re going to give the kind of right support. And then next you have to know that it”s very individually based. You”re not going to be able to write up a blueprint and say this is how we”re going to do it for everybody, because that”s going to be irresponsible, and you”re just gonna end up doing somebody a disservice.”

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

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Podcast: Dwight Howard chooses the Rockets

Posted by on Jul 9, 2013 in Dwight Howard, Jim Buss, Kamenetzky Brothers Land O'Lakers Podcast, Kobe Bryant, Lakers Audio, Mike D'Antoni, Mitch Kupchak, Pau Gasol, Podcast, Steve Nash | 4 comments

For this show, we decided to think outside the box and focus the majority of conversation around Dwight Howard joining the Houston Rockets. A bold approach, for certain, but we've never been afraid to buck convention. The show can be heard by clicking on the module, and below is a breakdown of talking points.

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

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