Home > Sports, Uncategorized > Lakers Pre-Season Progress 2012: 10/16

Lakers Pre-Season Progress 2012: 10/16

No true Lakers fan is actually worried that we haven’t won a pre-season game, yet, right? We have new players, veteran players, a new offense to learn, a task master for a head coach – who actually gave the players a day off Sunday! – and all that the naysayers can say is: “They haven’t won a game yet.” Really? C’mon!

I might be willing to listen to those who are capable of breaking down their 3rd Quarter collapses on defense, which is truly the only concern going forward, for me, at this time. But that’s been the point in the games so far that Brown puts in his 2nd tier players. Can the Lakers defend? Can they get back defensively off the offensive set they are trying to learn? Does the Princeton Offense put them in a vulnerable position if they don’t rebound a missed shot? That might be a concern to comment on. And then last year’s memories of a non-existent bench comes to mind: Will Antawn Jamison & Jodie Meeks help the back court from being so anemic? Will they contribute in a meaningful way? Or will bench players merely put fingers in the dike of a slowly diminishing lead until we can get starters back on the court?

Another wrinkle in the Lakers season is their association with TWCSportsNet! The breakdowns of the game before, during & after with James Worthy & Coach Dave Miller are fantastic! If you watch the replayed, “encore performance” of Lakers games like I do, the Lakers new home for TV home & away inserts player & coach interviews at key segments of the game: it’s brilliant! Concerns: Jordan Hill’s recent injury is a setback for him, personally, but it’s also a red flag for the Lakers, potentially changing their decisions on who to keep moving forward in the event his return is delayed…

Yes: There are questions to be answered about the success of the Los Angeles Lakers moving forward, in their constant push toward putting another championship banner in the rafters!

But the positives far outweigh the minuses at this point in the season: Kobe Bryant is “elated” that he can just be a Shooting Guard with Steve Nash running the floor! Steve Nash will make everybody better! He’s that good – check that… Steve Nash is that great! Will his back hold up over the course of the season? I’m hoping our elite training staff can do for him what needs to be done, to match or surpass his previous experiences at Phoenix & Dallas. And speaking of medical/training staff: Can anybody explain how it is possible that Dwight Howard might be available prior to Christmas? The word is he could actually be available for playing time prior to the end of the pre-season! If Dwight Howard is able to start the season at 80%, especially with the loss of Jordan Hill due to a herniated disc, The Lakers will be in great shape to take the division title, possibly the conference title! Sorry, Clippers fans.

In the absence of Dwight Howard, Robert Sacre has played very, very well! I like Andrew Goudelock’s shooting ability, but his defense is still suspect. I’m not a fan of Darius Morris, Steve Blake, or Chris Duhon, however; so, the backup Point Guard position is still “weak.” Darius Johnson-Odom seems to be well-liked by the coaching staff. I’m hopeful a veteran like Chris Douglas-Roberts will bolster the bench. My only question is: If Leandro Barbosa played effectively beside Steve Nash before, and he is still available now, isn’t his speed & scoring ability of interest? Do we need him in the playoffs to offset the speed of Russell Westbrook, for instance?

There are questions, no doubt, about how the Lakers will come together: thankfully, unlike last year’s lockout-shortened season, Coach Mike Brown has time to mold his squad into a team that starts the season with a running knowledge of the playbook! I like what I see: the top 12 players to be kept seems obvious, auditions being held for the rest who might be kept on a D-League team.

Lock to Make Team: Kobe Bryant, Dwight Howard, Steve Nash, Pau Gasol, Metta World Peace (who’s in shape, playing great, by the way!) – definitely the Starting 5.

Bench Players: Antawn Jamison, Jodie Meeks, Steve Blake, Jordan C Hill, Robert Sacre, Chris Douglas-Roberts, Darius Johnson-Odom – that’s a total of 12, so far.

Who else? Chris Duhon? Darius Morris? Andrew Goudelock? Is a trade in the works?

I like what GM Mitch Kupchak has put together for Mike Brown to work with! I love the coaching staff!

What’s not to like about The Lakers for 2012-2013?

Let’s go, Lakers! Let’s go!

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Categories: Sports, Uncategorized
  1. runsvold
    16 October 2012 at 11:37 pm

    It was reported this afternoon that Jordan Hill will be able to re-join the team before the end of the month, that the herniated disk in his back isn’t as bad as first thought: That’s good news for Hill, of course, but a huge relief to Lakers fans everywhere, as well, I’m sure. Thanks for the update, Mike Trudell!

    It appears more people felt compelled to stay home to observe the Obama-Romney 2nd Debate than turned out for tonight’s Lakers rematch with the Utah Jazz at the Honda Center in Anaheim (lots of empty seats).

    I’m curious if the game this Sunday at Staples Center might allow me to leave my seats in Section 319, Row 12 for the Lower Deck? Probably not. Hopefully Dwight Howard will be suited up and playing by then! One can hope, right? Go, Lakers! This game is awful: both teams started a combined 5-24…smh “Not a great quarter for the Lakers, Jazz closing it out on a 15-3 run for an 11 point advantage: 26-15. Jamison started for a MIA Pau Gasol… But boy did Kobe put on a show for the fans in the 3rd quarter! He was ready for the season to start tomorrow!

    Early today, I heard Dwight Howard quoted to have said something like: “Don’t over-commit on defense; we’ll be fine.” That was said to teammates, of course: I suspect he expects his defensive presence to make a difference. But also, Dwight Howard will hopefully keep the other team honest when he’s on offense, not allowing them to sag off on their man on defense, like they have done the last 2 games with Rob Sacre at Center. I actually like Sacre, a lot, for what he brings defensively to the team.

    The Lakers biggest struggle still appears to be transition defense from the Princeton Offense, instead of the natural roll out defensively from the system they ran last year. There’s still time to adjust, to learn the tricks to making this new system work for them; but so far, this pre-season has been a lot of ugly 2nd half play. So, show up early: enjoy the starters through the 1st half, then flip a coin what to do the rest of the game – unless you’re interested in knowing which D-League team some of these guys will be sent to so you can continue to follow their careers. lol

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