Forum Blue & Gold: Two games, two nights, and I think we are learning some things.

Looks like the Lakers have a rotation. At least for now (nothing is ever what it seems with Phil). Fisher, Kobe, Radmanovic, Gasol and Bynum starting with Odom, Farmar and Ariza the first guys off the bench. Preseason wins don’t matter, but the reason the Lakers got two in the last two nights is because of how well those units are playing together. The energy and pace that those three guys bring off the bench (along with Walton and Sasha when healthy) can’t be matched by any bench in the NBA I can think of right now. We could see the Lakers pull away at the end of the first and third quarters from a lot of teams this season.

  • Seriously, this was sick!


  • Here’s what is really important – that first five is also playing good defense, I think in part due to their length causing difficulties for the opposition. Odom comes in for Pau and they don’t miss a beat. Then with Farmar and Ariza, the defensive pressure steps up, as does the pace, with the second unit.

Also, as they were doing early last year, you can see Lakers guards jumping passing lanes on the perimeter, willing to take risks because they feel like they have a backstop.

  • This happens all the time here and on other Lakers sites, and I don’t think it’s fair any more – people say “Vlad and Luke’s oversized contracts….” They both are getting the midlevel. But if Radmanovic is playing like he did this weekend or did at the end of last year – starting, spreading the floor with his threes, working well in the offense and playing decent defense, he is well worth the money he is making. There will be games where Ariza gets more time at the three, especially down the stretch, because of the need for a stopper at the three. But Radmanovic is a good fit in this offense and on this team. I think what he makes about suits the skills (in the crazy NBA economy).
  • All that above said, Trevor Ariza hit a couple of nice jumpers, one from the right baseline one a straightaway three against Toronto. If he keeps that up it is going to be hard not to play him a lot.
  • Andrew Bynum is starting to find the spaces in the triangle he did last year, diving to the basket when Kobe and now Pau draw a double team. He had a few of his easy baskets underneath that way against the Raptors. If he keeps that up when it matters, he’ll score plenty. Bchamp said the same things in the comments:

Bynum and Gasol looked much better together in tonight’s game. It seemed like anytime the Lakers ran a Kobe/Gasol pick n roll Kobe got doubled and he’d flip the ball over to Pau in the high post area. The natural inclination is for the opposing center to rotate over and cover Pau but of course this leads to a wide open Bynum sitting underneath the rim. I see lots of possibilities here going forward.

  • Bynum and Pau also both did a good job of getting down the floor fast and getting deep position before the defense could really set. There are six to 10 points a night to be had that way.
  • Kevin Pelton over at Basketball Prospectus put together a list of players who should have breakout years (based on a statistical method of analysis). Andrew Bynum and Trevor Ariza make the list.
  • New Lakers blog with some notes after every game over at examiner.com, check it out.
  • New News: Brandon Heath has been waived. This was expected, but we hope he lands on his feet somewhere and soon.
  • Lakers 24 7

    We have the best bench with these two, along with Sasha. Lakers own all.

  • stinger

    trevor and farmar have stepped their game waaay up since last year. even mihm is looking solid. let’s get this ring! does anyone know why kobe has been throwing up the “3 fingers” lately? what does it mean!?!?!?

  • http://jamieinsider.celebuzz.com Jamie Spears Insider

    Yeah imagine the bench when Sasha comes back. That’s another 3pt threat.

  • http://swishtheball.net trevor A.

    first unit
    mr.0.4
    Black mamba
    space cadet
    the spaniard
    baby shaq

    second unit
    Ear jordan
    the machine
    the poster maker
    the goods
    mimzy

    reserves
    monkey king
    the new energizer
    fluke
    Dacos
    CJ MGiles

  • http://swishtheball.net stu myers

    [Comment ID #52692 Will Be Quoted Here]those nicknames are
    NIIIII-ECE

  • Kobeftw

    If everyone says healthy and share the ball, Lakers will be defiantly reach the finals.

  • Peanut Butter Spread

    Anyone notice that in this game, Kobe’s usual white sleeve from last year is gone?

  • Russ Ahi

    I’ve been watching all the pre-season games and I feel like the Lakers gotta do something with their lineup…

    I admit, that moving Lamar to the bench has added some type of spark to the entire team. The second unit is pretty dangerous in itself and would be good if they were their own team…

    but, i feel like we have too many guys at different positions…I guess it’s good because you never know if we’ll have a huge injury in the middle of the season and need to use them…

    but i was watching last nite and realized…”sasha isn’t even here”…i mean, that’s ANOTHER player that is in the second unit. I donno, this is the way i see it.

    C – BYNUMITE
    PF – PAU!
    SF – VLADI
    SG – MAMBA
    PG – D-FISH

    2nd UNIT (WHICH IS PRETTY DARN GOOD)
    C – MIHM
    PF – L.O.
    SF – ARIZA
    SG – SASHA
    PG – FARMAR

    LAST 5 GUYS
    WALTON
    POWELL
    SUN
    KARL
    MBENGA

    I donno. It’s weird that Walton is gonna be in and out of the second unit. It worked in the last couple games because sasha is out, but what will happen when sasha comes back? someone is not gonna play alot. I personally like Luke. I think people give him a hard time, but I think the injuries and the going in and out of the starting lineup has affected him. Remember when he was a starter? He was actually a great player. I just hope he finds his shot again, because he’s got Ariza to compete with and no one can stop that guy right now.

    Also, i don’t know why they brought Sun. I think he’s a great player, but he’ll never get to play this year. If he’s playing out 2 mintues during preseason, he wont get any time during the regular season. And I like Karl, but he always looks so lost out there. I just hope the Lakers think of a smart rotation instead of just playing everyone. They can’t just play random people like last year. IT’S CHAMPIONSHIP OR NOTHING. THIS IS IT!!!

  • LAKERNATION

    [Comment ID #52695 Will Be Quoted Here]

    Dude you were going fine with all the nicknames till you have to trash my main man (LUKE) WALTON like that. He didn’t play bad at all last night in my opinion. Man I love having LUKE around. All summer I read tones of haters talking a lot of sh*t about LUKE and when he made his season debut SAT. night man I got excited. As to go along with last night as well. So my point is all you guys are going to regret all that stuff you said about him. MARK MY WORDS!!!!

  • LAKERNATION

    [Comment ID #52705 Will Be Quoted Here]

    Everyone true LAKER fan right here. Did you see how he did not trash anyone on our team. Meaning nothing neg. about LUKE “the man” WALTON, and COBE KARL. I wish we had more of you out there man.

  • Jack Nicholson

    so many 3 point shooters. the lakers will be out there going BOOM BOOM BOOM. i wanna see DJ shoot a three. AWESOMER.

  • Jack Nicholson

    another thought of the weekend:

    kobe brought back the bicep band. awful. it’s like i woke up from a sexy dream.

  • Lorenzo

    Was at the game, 5th row. So good. On television you could not really tell how crazy we got. pity :/

  • http://jamieinsider.celebuzz.com Jamie Spears Insider

    ROFL! Did you guys notice the guy who posted the lineups with nicknames and the guy who posted the lineups with real names actually have the same lineups xD

  • DCLAKER

    I’ve watched it 10 times yesterday and probably’ll be 20 today….SIC!!!

  • http://swishtheball.net stu myers

    [Comment ID #52708 Will Be Quoted Here]
    what nickname should luke have

  • GT

    Puke?

  • Jack Nicholson

    [Comment ID #52749 Will Be Quoted Here]

    David Hasselhoff Lite.