I know it’s only 2 games into the short 66 game regular season, but i’m starting to get annoyed by all the talk about the Lakers current roster. Lamar Odom, who was a key player in their championship run, was dealt away for nothing, because he got emotional when his trade to the Hornets was vetoed by David Stern. So here we are, panic attack by the media about the Lakers, who said their done, their not championship caliber anymore, they’ve fallen off, the Clippers are the new team in LA. I’ll tell you why right now, why the Lakers are still contenders in the West. If you look back at my early season preview. I have them finishing 5th in the Western Conference. With that said, when you look at the previous rosters of the Lakers, who was really on the bench the last 3 years? Well let me show you
*Rewind: Early Season Preview Link: https://thaliveking.wordpress.com/2011/12/21/nba-eastern-conference-western-conference-early-playoff-picture/ *
08-09 Lakers Roster
09-10 Lakers Roster
2011 Lakers Roster
(Charts Courtesy of Wikipedia.org)
The two years they won the championships they’ve had guys like Josh Powell, Mbenga, Luke Walton, Sasha, Adam Morrison and Jordan Farmar. I’m a Lakers fan (Pacers fan first and ALWAYS) and I’m laughing. None of those guys really contributed during those runs other than being the guys in practice to play against. Farmar played well on occasion during those runs, but not enough for praise. Last year, when Dallas laid their epic onslaught on the Lakers, they actually had a decent bench in terms of quality, but same thing, Lakers relied heavily on their 6-man rotation, with Odom coming off the bench. Matt Barnes and Shannon brown really weren’t consistent enough come playoff time, which added more pressure for the Lakers starters, leaving the team burnt, laying in ashes and swept away while Laker-Haters rejoiced. But the philosophy of the Lakers, who had consistently made it to the finals three years in a row, won two out of the three trips, won it with lack of depth, but last year got exposed. Which brings me to this years roster.
11-12 Lakers Roster
(courtesy of LakersUniverse.com)
To those who don’t watch ALL the basketball games, I knew who guys like Jason Kapono, Josh McRoberts and Troy Murphy were before they got to the Lakers. Kapono is really just a knock down shooter, but McRoberts is a player who can do pretty much what Lamar Odom can do with hustle and toughness, something the Lakers lacked over the years. He’s already a fan favorite (Nicknamed: McRambis) and getting consistent minutes in the rotation. Troy Murphy is really a shooter who can stretch the defense and grab rebounds when Bynum or Gasol is out. The Lakers bench this year, with the addition of the two rookies (Goudelock and Morris) , are really the best bench the Lakers had over the years when you stop to pay attention to who’s really on the roster. Throw out all that Hollywood talk, and let’s really talk basketball here. Guys like Stephen A Smith would tell you there’s guys on the roster who he never knew existed because they are not a Chris Paul or Dwight Howard, but they are solid role players. I don’t blame any reporter for not knowing who these guys are, but when you really watch the game and pay attention, you will see what each guy will bring to the Lakers as the season progresses. When a team has more options they are more likely to be more successful, it’s not always about the stars, even the stars need help in Hollywood.
So with that being said, enough with the I don’t know who this guy is, he can’t help the Lakers win talk, I don’t remember guys like Adam Morrison contributing to the Lakers success either but they still got it done. Lakers have a lot of work to do, the new coach Mike Brown who is coming in with a new philosophy with little preparation time will eventually pay due in the long run when everyone on the roster knows their role and identity. The Lakers this year will compete, yeah I said it, no team in the West is a favorite to win it this year, my honest opinion, because it’s wide open. When playoff time comes, just hope you don’t run in to a bad match-up like the Spurs and get sent packing. Lack of options can lead to bad match ups being exposed night in, night out, you need to give teams different looks, and I think this year the Lakers have that.
Before I go, Lakers are no longer restricted to the Triangle-Offense, so players like Ron Artest and Steve Blake, who struggled last year will play to their strengths, which will help them get their confidence back, leading them to be more productive as the season goes on mark my word!!
Don’t agree? Follow me on Twitter @ThaLiveKing and let me know what you think. And don’t bring the “I Hate The Lakers Talk” nobody cares.