Early season success: For real or fraud?

. Wednesday, November 21, 2007
  • Agregar a Technorati
  • Agregar a Del.icio.us
  • Agregar a DiggIt!
  • Agregar a Yahoo!
  • Agregar a Google
  • Agregar a Meneame
  • Agregar a Furl
  • Agregar a Reddit
  • Agregar a Magnolia
  • Agregar a Blinklist
  • Agregar a Blogmarks

During this past summer, while many Los Angeles Laker fans (including me) were waiting for general manager Mitch Kupchak and owner Jerry Buss to make a blockbuster trade for disgruntled ex-Minnesota Timberwolve forward Kevin Garnett, first-year player Jordan Farmar was busy taking yoga classes. While many Laker fans were calling for Kupchak's termination when his ineptitude caused Garnett to slip into the hands of the Lakers' dreaded historical rivals, the Boston Celtics, Andrew Bynum was somewhere in the gym, getting bigger and stronger. It seems to be paying off.

Although the Celtics (8-1) are off to their best start since the days of Larry Legend, Kevin McHale and Robert Parish, the Lakers (7-3) are not that far behind. Although it may be early in the season for anyone to gauge how good or how bad a team is, no one can deny that the Lakers are far from a lottery team at this point. While some people are quick to point out the excellent record that the Lakers had going into the second half of last season that turned into a seventh seed playoff team that was unceremoniously defeated by the Phoenix Suns in the first round of the playoffs, there is a vast difference between the Lakers of this year and last. If the bench play of the team continues to be consistent throughout the season, the Lakers will not only advance further into the playoffs, they will climb back into the ranks of the elite teams of the NBA.

In addition to Farmar, who is averaging 10 points coming off the bench and Bynum, who is averaging 11 points, the trade for Trevor Ariza provides a much needed defensive presence for players such as Shawn Marion, Manu Ginobili and Josh Howard, players on Western Conference teams who are known to give the Lakers a hard time. Ariza also provides more athleticism than Brian Cook and Maurice Evans combined.

In order to quell Kobe Bryant's demands to be traded, the play of the bench with the leadership of Farmar, has to play like it doesn't have Bryant to bail the team out. With that said, the Lakers might never win a championship with Kobe Bryant again, but they need to play like contenders, which they are doing so far.


Matt said...

The Lakers are 1-2 since making that trade, obviously Brian Cook was a key ingredient to the team's success.

I think tonight's game proved the Celtics and Lakers are not actually that close. It also proved that Lamar Odom is complete garbage.