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Podcast: Lakers Media Day, expectations, positional battles and the "Breaking Bad" finale

Posted by on Oct 2, 2013 in Jeanie Buss, Jerry Buss, Jim Buss, Kamenetzky Brothers Land O'Lakers Podcast, Kobe Bryant, Lakers Audio, Mike D'Antoni, Mitch Kupchak, Opinion, Pau Gasol, Podcast, Steve Blake, Steve Nash | 1 comment

With the Government shut down and our politicians demonstrating yet again their dysfunctional, self-centered, hypocritical incompetency, the United States of America, the greatest nation on Earth, has embarked on a desperate, collective search for a hero to provide hope as society crumbles into ruin.

Look no further, America. Your huckleberry has arrived.

To listen to the show, click on the module above or either of the download links. As for talking points…:

  • A look at the NBA headlines. LeBron and 'Melo won't answer questions about their potential free agency in 2014. Greg Monroe reportedly won't receive an extension from the Pistons, which would make him a potential target for the Lakers next summer as a restricted free agent. Andrew Bynum cut his hair, an absolute tragedy for fans of Drew's myriad bizarre stylings in Philly. (People like us, for example.) The NBA Competition Committee has voted to return the NBA Finals to a 2-2-1-1-1 format, a necessary change, long overdue.
  • Lakers Media Day on Saturday was a low key affair, but there was Papa John's pizza for the media!!! What, if anything, can be deciphered from this turn of events?
  • Could the Lakers actually benefit as a franchise from a season with low expectations?
  • How will MDA divvy up the minutes at point guard, shooting guard and small forward?
  • There are a bunch of dudes with partially guaranteed contracts fighting to become Lakers. Who has the best chance of sticking?
  • AAK!!! Is Sriracha or wasabi the superior spicy condiment? How can Blake Griffin shut up those who dismiss him as a one-dimensional dunker? What did we think of the “Breaking Bad” finale?
  • In a very cool story, Brandon Bass is learning how to swim as a 28 year-old adult. What skill would we each love to learn from scratch as even older adults? (On a related note, Brian has no idea what a “lathe” is.)

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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Mitch Kupchak on Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Mike D'Antoni, and the 2013-14 season

Posted by on Sep 26, 2013 in Dwight Howard, Jeanie Buss, Jim Buss, Jordan Hill, Kobe Bryant, Lakers Analysis, Lakers Audio, Mike D'Antoni, Mitch Kupchak, Opinion, Pau Gasol, Phil Jackson, Steve Blake, Steve Nash |

Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak took questions Wednesday in El Segundo, ahead of Saturday's big Media Day extravaganza kickoff bash to the see-what-sticks 2013-14 season. He covered plenty of ground over the course of about 35 minutes, and we'll get some of his comments, along with some amount of pithy commentary, up as soon as possible.

In the meantime, for those who want to hear the whole thing, here's the full audio:

And now some individual clips for those who prefer their press conferences pre-sifted…

Kupchak is probably right that the book excerpt in isolation doesn't impact the way potential free agents would view the city and the franchise, but collectively with other examples of family discord or disorganization, it absolutely matters. The perception of ownership makes a difference. Say what you want about Dwight Howard, but he was reportedly unimpressed with Jim Buss during the team's presentation to him. No question, Jim has a reputation to overcome.

Without question, many of the historic advantages held by the franchise are mitigated in today's NBA, for all sorts of reasons. If as an organization the Lakers have to overcome the perception that management in the post-Dr. Buss era isn't on the same page, it'll make things that much more difficult. Going forward, whatever conflict exists as Jim and Jeanie navigate a world without their dad needs to be kept in-house.

I find this one particularly interesting. Once again, Kupchak is pushing the (totally realistic and wise) notion the rebuilding process will extend beyond this offseason. Unless the Lakers sign LeBron James — not going to happen — the idea the Lakers play out this year then emerge next summer a fully reconstructed contender is far-fetched. More likely, it takes a couple years. Kupchak's message is sound: It's more important to rebuild correctly than it is to rebuild quickly.

Maybe I'm reading too far in between the lines here… but it sounds like they'd like to get the ball back in Nash's hands a little more, and avoid the “Magic Bryant” style of play they used last year, both to protect Kobe post-injury and best utilize the rest of the roster. (Meanwhile, I'm very optimistic about what Jordan Farmar might do for this year's team, and Kupchak's comments do little to temper those feelings.)

D'Antoni has plenty of support within the organization. He's not going anywhere. (Still, he might want to win a preseason game or two, just to be safe…)

One more interesting note: I asked Kupchak how many players the Lakers plan to carry this year, and he indicated management could be more inclined to carry a 14th or even 15th player into the season. Obviously, the team's injury situation plays a role in that decision. If the vets are still a little tender, more bodies are needed to limit their minutes and facilitate effective practices. But the Lakers also have a bunch of players in on cheap deals, representing some of their best access to young, potentially useful talent. It's worth the modest investment to see if one or two might pan out over the course of the year. All in all, very good news for the make-good guys in camp, and something to watch as the preseason plays out.

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10 reasons the Lakers could be interesting to watch this year

Posted by on Aug 30, 2013 in Jordan Hill, Kobe Bryant, Lakers Analysis, Opinion, Pau Gasol, Steve Nash | 6 comments

Let us stipulate the following:

First:  ”HERE IN L.A. WE ONLY ACCEPT TITLES FROM OUR LAKERS BECAUSE ANYTHING ELSE IS THE WEAKEST OF SAUCE AND WHAT DO YOU KNOW ANYWAY KAMENETZKY YOU GREW UP IN ST. LOUIS!”

Second: The most plausible scenario in which the Lakers win a title this season involves, say, 12 of the NBA’s best teams deciding at the last minute to form their own league.

Harsh realities notwithstanding, the Lakers still are required to play 82 games (and if things break the right way, a few playoff games as well) before The Transformational Summer of 2014 begins.  I won’t pretend title runs aren’t more exciting or that this (meaning campaigns in which “better than people think” means landing a seven seed) is the goal, but there’s no reason 2013-14  can’t be a perfectly enjoyable year for Lakers fans. There is, even, the potential for some fun! Yes, the F-word, something nearly absent in each of the last three seasons, the last two particularly, and last year totally. This season, games can be watched for enjoyment. None of us must imbue every result with larger meaning and speculation on how whatever shortcomings will impact their chances in June. If they win? Great! Enjoy your evening. If they lose? Great, they’re closer to a better draft slot. Enjoy your evening.

Given how the expectations anaconda has squeezed the franchise over the last three years, a relatively consequence-free season* isn’t the worst thing in the world. And since the larger team goals are limited, it’s more about individual stories and sources of entertainment. And in those, the 2013-14 Lakers are pretty well stocked.

Here are 10 reasons the Lakers could be interesting:

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Land O'Lakers Podcast: Metta World Peace departs, free agents arrive, and more

Posted by on Jul 16, 2013 in Kamenetzky Brothers Land O'Lakers Podcast, Kobe Bryant, Lakers Analysis, Lakers Audio, Metta World Peace, Opinion, Podcast | 5 comments

The Dwight Howard dust has settled, at least a little, over the last week or so, but news keeps rolling in for the Lakers.  And as long as it does, we”ll keep rolling out podcasts. The high points of our newest episode, or so we hope:

  • Metta World Peace is now a New York Knickerbocker, signed to a free agent deal following the end of an eventful (and ultimately positive) run in L.A.. Any surprise the Lakers let him go? What exactly did the Lakers lose when making the decision to amnesty him?
  • MWP is gone, but the Lakers have made three (ok, technically, two) additions over the last few days, on top of last week”s agreement with free agent center Chris Kaman (our thoughts on him, if you missed them, can be found around the 34-minute mark of our previous show). We break down the positives and negatives of Nick Young, Wesley Johnson, and the expected-to-be-signed former Laker Jordan Farmar.
  • Howard is officially in Houston, and already looks more comfortable. AK takes a look at his first post-signing comments as a Rocket.
  • Speaking of centers on the move, Andrew Bynum and Mike Brown are going to be re-united in Cleveland. Because that worked out so well the first time around. We know Brown”s a mensch. Any lower back pain relief
    construction careers
    boombox
    wireless tv speakers
    platelet rich plasma
    best drug rehabilitation
    construction jobs
    alcohol withdrawal
    shot Bynum just doesn”t remember Brown was his coach before?
  • We open the Twitter mailbag for a host of non-hoops related questions, from the proper time to shave one”s head to movies we admit enjoying only with a sense of shame to something about “real vs. fake booty.”

Finally,  and future NBA-themed adult film star actors.

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 TuneIn.com by heading here.

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