Phil talks about the current state of the team and the difference Bynum makes when out there with the squad…
DailyBreeze: It seems everyone has an opinion on whether the Lakers are better without Andrew Bynum clogging the paint and slowing them down.
Some have opined the Lakers are a good deal better without their injured 7-foot center.
Coach Phil Jackson acknowledged the benefits of playing without Bynum, but declined to say Friday that the Lakers are better without him. They are not as complete as they are when Bynum is healthy and in the starting lineup.
“Offensively, we’re more streamlined,” Jackson said. “We probably run better offensively. We can do things with multiple ball handers out there, particularly with Luke (Walton) and Lamar (Odom) out there. We know we have four ball handlers. Pau (Gasol) is very capable of running. So that part of our game, fastbreaks and scoring, has gone up.
“Defensively, I don’t think we’re quite as good.”
Just because they can: The Lakers have never wavered in their pursuit of the league’s best record and home-court advantage for all four rounds of the playoffs.
They have made it clear again and again that getting the top mark is their top priority for the regular season.
“It’s more of a challenge for us just to get the best record,” Kobe Bryant said. “That is kind of how we approach it. It’s not so much having home-court advantage in order to win a championship. It is more about us having the best record just to say that we have the best record. We are comfortably playing on the road and we will inevitably have to win games on the road to win a title.”