Saturday, December 20, 2014
Blog Page 111

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John G. Mabanglo | AFP | Getty Images

In lieu of the regular season, Laker Nation has decided to take you back through Laker history to recap important games, record-breaking performances and memorable news from the past 64 years of the franchise. We understand that it’s not the basketball you may have been hoping for, but for the time being, it’s the closest we’ll get to reading about the Lakers on a basketball court.

NOVEMBER 16, 2000
LA LAKERS 112 – SACRAMENTO KINGS 110 (OT)
KOBE’S GAME-TYING THREE, EIGHT POINTS IN OVERTIME POWER LAKERS TO 112-110 VICTORY

In a preview of playoff rivalries to come, the Lakers traveled up to Sacramento to play the Kings in a matchup of Pacific Division elites in 2000 – two weeks into the season, the Kings were on a five-game win streak. The Lakers, having started the season slowly as reigning NBA champions, were just beginning to find their groove having won their last two games.

What the Lakers weren’t expecting, though, was a game as tough as the one they encountered that Thursday. After all, the Kings would be playing without star forward Chris Webber due to an ankle injury that had forced him to miss their previous game. While the Lakers would keep up for the first quarter, the Kings forward tandem of Doug Christie and Peja Stojakovic would explode for a combined 61 points, with Stojakovic pulling down a career-high 17 rebounds.

Trailing by as many as 13 points with nine minutes remaining, the Lakers would rally to come within three points with 18 seconds to play before a missed three-point attempt by Brian Shaw would put the ball in Bryant’s hands. Bryant’s three-pointer with 2.3 seconds remaining would push the Lakers to overtime, where Bryant would score eight of the Lakers’ ten points en route to the 112-100 victory. Bryant would tally 31 points, 10 rebounds and three assists; Shaquille O’Neil would score 33 points and grab 16 rebounds in the contest, adding a crucial block in overtime to cement the win.

Quote of the Night: “I drained it. That was the best look I had all night. They were on me. . . . But when it came down to that last possession and everything broke down, I had a wide-open look.” – Laker guard Kobe Bryant, on his game-tying shot to send the Lakers to overtime. – From the LA Times, Nov. 17, 2000.

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In lieu of the regular season, Laker Nation has decided to take you back through Laker history to recap important games, record-breaking performances and memorable news from the past 64 years of the franchise. We understand that it’s not the basketball you may have been hoping for, but for the time being, it’s the closest we’ll get to reading about the Lakers on a basketball court.

NOVEMBER 15, 1960
LA LAKERS 123 – NY KNICKS 108
ELGIN BAYLOR SETS NBA MARK AT 71 POINTS

One year and seven days after setting an NBA scoring record for points in a game at 64, Laker forward Elgin Baylor was in Madison Square Garden to play against the New York Knicks in a two game doubleheader. The Lakers and Knicks, being the first game of the doubleheader, would not disappoint, as Baylor would go on to break his own NBA record by scoring 71 points.

Despite the overwhelmingly pro-Knick crowd, Baylor’s 34-point first half would turn Madison Square Garden in his favor, with fans chanting “Give it to Baylor” on every Laker possession…even with the Knicks only down at the half 65-58. Baylor would leave the game with 28 seconds remaining, given a standing ovation by the Knicks faithful after scoring 71 points on 28-for-48 shooting and 15-19 from the line. The performance would give the Lakers a 123-108 win in The Garden, and Baylor’s game would push the rebuilding Lakers to 5-7 on the season.

Baylor’s 71-point record would only stand for a little more than a year, as Wilt Chamberlain would score 78 points against the Lakers in a triple-overtime performance in December 1961. Baylor’s team record would stand for over 45 years before Kobe Bryant’s 81 would eclipse the mark in January 2006.

Quote of the Night: “Elgin did nothing unusual in that game. It was just a typical Baylor performance. He just came down the floor, his teammates would clear out an area, and he’d shoot — a jump shot or a driving layup, followed up by a rebound if he missed. Each particular shot had nothing amazing about it. It was just that Elgin was such an amazing player.” – Former Knicks forward Johnny Green on Baylor’s scoring performance – From Hoop Magazine, 1992

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Patrick McDermott | Getty Images

 

Do you hear that?

It’s the deafening silence of NBA basketball, a sound that will likely be heard throughout the dying ’11-12 NBA season.

By not coming to an agreement on the details of a new CBA, both the players and the owners unintentionally came to an agreement on one thing: Launching the nuclear option, a worst-case-scenario for all parties involved, and the possible end to any hope of NBA basketball this season.

Earlier this afternoon in New York, the NBPA officially (and unanimously) rejected the NBA’s latest offer. They followed up their dismissal by serving the NBA with a “disclaimer of interest”, a legal move that essentially disbands the players union and allows the individual players to file lawsuits against the NBA. While it serves many of the same purposes a complete decertification would, this measure has three distinct differences:

  • It eliminates the 45-day waiting period that would be mandatory for a decertification vote.
  • It is less final, and would allow the players to come back together as a union rather quickly.
  • Negotiating between the two sides can (and probably will) continue while lawsuits are pending.

Following the announcement, both union executive director Billy Hunter and NBA commissioner David Stern painted a dismal picture:

“We’ve arrived at the conclusion that the collective bargaining process has completely broken down.” – Hunter

“There will ultimately be a new collective bargaining agreement, but the 2011-12 season is now in jeopardy. Obviously, Mr. Kessler got his way and we are about to go into the nuclear winter of the NBA.” – Stern

NBPA president Derek Fisher –with Kobe Bryant and dozens of his fellow players behind him – remained confident in the union’s decision:

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Wen Roberts | Getty Images

In lieu of the regular season, Laker Nation has decided to take you back through Laker history to recap important games, record-breaking performances and memorable news from the past 64 years of the franchise. We understand that it’s not the basketball you may have been hoping for, but for the time being, it’s the closest we’ll get to reading about the Lakers on a basketball court.

NOVEMBER 14, 1971
BOSTON CELTICS 115 – LA LAKERS 128
WILT’S TRIPLE-DOUBLE POWERS LAKERS PAST CELTICS

When the Lakers and Celtics met at the Great Western Forum 40 years ago today, the longtime rivals were going in opposite directions. The Celtics, playing the Lakers in their third road game in three nights, had lost their last two in Phoenix and Seattle to fall to 104. The Lakers, however, were trending up, having won their last seven games entering their home contest against the Celtics at 13-3.

In a larger-than-life performance, center Wilt Chamberlain would record 31 rebounds, 13 blocked shots and 10 assists for a non-scoring triple-double in the 128-115 win over the Celtics, with former Celtic and arch-rival Bill Russell watching the game from the sidelines in his first visit to the Forum as a fan. Chamberlain would only score three points in the game, coming from a free throw and a late dunk in the fourth quarter.

While the Celtics would take 25 more shots than the Lakers, the inside presence of Chamberlain would force the Celtics to shoot 36% from the field, with Celtics star John Havilcek laboring for 18 points on 26 shots. Guard Gail Goodrich, back with the Lakers from his time in Phoenix, would score a game-high 36 points in only 33 minutes. The Lakers would use a fast-paced run-and-gun style outpace the Celtics, with Jerry West, Happy Hairston and Flynn Robinson combining for 65 points in their eighth straight victory.

Quote of the Night: “I counted them. There were 14.” – Wilt Chamberlain, on his incorrectly recorded 13 blocks against the Boston Celtics. – From the LA Times, Nov. 15, 1971.

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It’s a question that many people like to debate amongst friends.

Who would win a one-on-one matchup against Kobe Bryant and LeBron James?

LeBron James was over at the London School of Basketball for a Nike promotion, and he was asked by a reporter who would win a one-on-one matchup between himself and Kobe Bryant: (via HoopFix.com)

I’m a team basketball player, its not a one on one sport. But, i’m not going to not take myself against anybody. I always feel no matter who im going against that I’m going to come out victorious. We won’t see it, nobody will ever see it, so you all can stop asking that question.”

It was a great follow-up question as Bryant was asked the same question last year, and without hesitation said he would win the match-up.

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Photo by Getty Images

In lieu of the regular season, Laker Nation has decided to take you back through Laker history to recap important games, record-breaking performances and memorable news from the past 64 years of the franchise. We understand that it’s not the basketball you may have been hoping for, but for the time being, it’s the closest we’ll get to reading about the Lakers on a basketball court.

NOVEMBER 13, 1979
METTA WORLD PEACE BORN

It’s time to take another break from your daily Lakers history lesson and have some cake, some Hennessy, and maybe some psychiatry sessions because today is Metta World Peace’s birthday! Born a week after his childhood buddy and teammate Lamar Odom, World Peace turns 32 today.

World Peace came into the league at age 19 with the Chicago Bulls, playing for four teams across ten years before joining the Lakers after their 2009 NBA Championship over the Orlando Magic. Stepping in the small forward spot vacated by Trevor Ariza’s departure, World Peace would win an NBA championship in 2010, coming up with 20 points in Game 7 of the NBA Finals against the Boston Celtics. World Peace  would average career lows across the board in his two years with the Lakers, but the age that has slowed him offensively has made him calmer and wiser; the 2010-11 season marked the first year in World Peace’s career that he had played in all 82 games.

Metta World Peace has been busy during the NBA lockout with careers in dancing, comedy, film and his infamous name change. With no NBA games to slow him down, we at Laker Nation wish Metta World Peace a safe and happy birthday!

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Credit | BestSportsPhotos.com

In lieu of the regular season, Laker Nation has decided to take you back through Laker history to recap important games, record-breaking performances and memorable news from the past 64 years of the franchise. We understand that it’s not the basketball you may have been hoping for, but for the time being, it’s the closest we’ll get to reading about the Lakers on a basketball court.

NOVEMBER 12, 1967
CHICAGO BULLS 96 – LA LAKERS 97
LAKERS OVERCOME EIGHT POINT DEFICIT IN FINAL TWO MINUTES TO UPEND HAPLESS BULLS

At 6-5, the 1967-68 Lakers were still trying to transition without their team’s star point guard Jerry West. West would only play 51 games that season due to a leg injury, forcing coach Bill van Breda Kolff to put third-year guard Gail Goodrich into the starting lineup. Goodrich would go on to play 79 games that season, providing a level of play that would cause the expansion Phoenix Suns to draft Goodrich in the 1968 NBA expansion draft.

After trailing for most of the game, Goodrich and fellow Laker Mel Counts would combine for for 14 points in the final 110 seconds, sending the Bulls to the line five times. The Bulls would shoot 3-of-9 from the foul line, allowing the Lakers to call timeout with two seconds remaining down 96-95. The inbound pass would go out of bounds, but not before referee Earl Strom would whistle Bulls player Reggie Harding for an off-the-ball foul, allowing Mel Counts to go to the line for two free throws to ice the game. Counts would make both foul shots, and with time expiring on a desperation heave, the Lakers would eke out a 97-96 win, with Goodrich and Counts combining for 34 points in the contest.

The loss, followed by another 124-115 loss to the Lakers three nights later would push the Chicago Bulls to 1-13 and last place in the Western Division. Injuries would continue to plague the Lakers with inconsistency, as they would fall to .500 at 22-22 midway through the season.

Quote of the Night: “It was utterly ridiculous. I’ve seen some close ones in my time, but nothing like this. I gave up a half-dozen times, figuring it was just one of those nights.” -Former Lakers coach Bill van Breda Kolff on his team’s comeback performance – From the LA Times, Nov. 13, 1967.

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Vince Bucci | AFP | Getty Images

In lieu of the regular season, Laker Nation has decided to take you back through Laker history to recap important games, record-breaking performances and memorable news from the past 64 years of the franchise. We understand that it’s not the basketball you may have been hoping for, but for the time being, it’s the closest we’ll get to reading about the Lakers on a basketball court.

NOVEMBER 11, 2001
ORLANDO MAGIC 95 – LA LAKERS 108
SHAQ, KOBE COMBINE FOR 66 AS LAKERS DEFEAT MAGIC

In early November of 2001, the Lakers were starting off the season the right way as back-t0-back NBA champions…at least statistically. Though they were going into their November 11th game against the Orlando Magic at 5-0, the effectiveness of new additions to the roster as well as Shaquille O’Neal’s health were still points of concern if the Lakers wanted to win their third straight NBA championship.

Despite breaking his nose early in the game, Kobe Bryant would come out to shoot an efficient 8-of-13 from the field, scoring 28 points in 33 minutes of play along with eight assists. Constant bleeding from the nose would force Bryant repeatedly to the bench, and at the end of the 108-95 win, Bryant’s nose, stuffed with gauze to limit the bleeding, more closely resembled that of a heavyweight fighter than a 23-year-old basketball phenom.

In Kobe’s absence, Shaquille O’Neal would roll to 38 points against a Magic roster that was ill prepared for the game – the team’s only players that could guard O’Neal would be the 39-year-old Patrick Ewing in the final year of his career, the 36-year-old former teammate of O’Neal in Horace Grant, and the 20-year-old recently-drafted Steven Hunter, who at that time weighed 100 pounds less than the officially-listed 325 pounds of O’Neal. Lacking any substantial competition inside, O’Neal would also finish with 18 rebounds and four blocks.

Though the Magic were considered to be the favorites to come out of the Eastern Conference in the 2001-02 season, the Lakers would have no problem defeating the Magic 108-95 to move to 6-0. The Lakers would then continue their run of dominance for the next month, winning their next 10 of 11 to move to 16-1 en route to a 58-24 record and the 2002 NBA championship.

Quote of the Night: “Shaq’s unstoppable…and he’s not even in shape.”Former Magic coach Doc Rivers, on his team’s ability to defend Shaquille O’Neal.

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Patrick McDermott | Getty Images

Wait for it, wait for it…

Yep, it’s another riveting NBA lockout update, brought to you by… really, at this point, who cares.

What we do care about is a deal getting completed (sooner rather than later) and the belated start of the ’11-12 NBA season.

In predictable fashion, the NBA and NBPA followed up Stern’s ultimatum (and Wednesday at 5pm deadline) with a flurry of meetings that ultimately produced much of the same rhetoric:

Blah, blah, blah.

That about covers it.

When the dust settled, the players had a revised proposal in their hands from the NBA, along with an assurance from Stern that this would be their “best and final” offer (not that we haven’t heard that before).

“There’s really nothing left to negotiate about. This is best attempt by NBA to address concerns the players expressed. ”

Derek Fisher and the NBPA chose to end negotiations last night (Thursday) in favor of taking a closer look at the NBA’s proposal, something he is scheduled to do with the 30 player reps early next week. While this may appear to be an optimistic step, Fisher expressed quite the opposite:

“It [the NBA’s latest offer] does not meet us entirely on the system issues that we felt were extremely important to close this deal out.”

To summarize the obstacles still remaining…

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(Photo: Vince Bucci/AFP/Getty Images)

They’ve been here before. As if it were a cruel joke, the Lakers find themselves facing yet another reduced season after dreams of a championship one dissolved in disappointment.

The ’98 Lakers were unceremoniously swept from the Western Conference Finals by an aging Utah Jazz team.

And they had plenty of time to think about it, as NBA owners locked the players out for 4 months until play resumed in January.

What ensued was bad basketball for the league and a disaster of a season for the Lakers.

With no training camp and little time for player preparation, a homogenized 50-game season produced such clunkers as a 49 point performance by the Chicago Bulls against the Miami Heat.

With Nick Van Exel gone, 15 year veteran Derek Harper and sophomore Derek Fisher submitted one of the worst statistical Lakers point guard seasons. Combined, they would not produce ten assists in 58 games played.

After a slow start and the failure of the previous year still fresh in their minds, the Lakers felt forced to make a trade. Gone was fan favorite Eddie Jones and the lackadaisical Elden Campbell to Charlotte in exchange for B.J. Armstrong, J.R. Reid, and Glenn Rice.

As back-to-back, and back-to-back-to-back games mounted to make up the almost lost season, the poor played continued and Lakers coach Del Harris was fired and replaced with Kurt Rambis.

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Rick Stewart | Getty Images

In lieu of the regular season, Laker Nation has decided to take you back through Laker history to recap important games, record-breaking performances and memorable news from the past 64 years of the franchise. We understand that it’s not the basketball you may have been hoping for, but for the time being, it’s the closest we’ll get to reading about the Lakers on a basketball court.

NOVEMBER 10, 1994
“BIG GAME” JAMES WORTHY RETIRES FROM NBA

Twelve years after being drafted first overall by the Los Angeles Lakers, James Worthy was calling it quits. Aching knees had taken the strength and speed away from the tenacious small forward, leaving Worthy a bench player in his final appearances with the Lakers. In a press conference 17 years ago today, Worthy made his retirement from the game formal, and with it, ended the career of the last remaining pillar of the Showtime Lakers from the 1980s.

Worthy would be one of the elite few to win a championship in both his collegiate days and in the pros, winning one NCAA championship with North Carolina and three with the Lakers. Worthy would also have the distinction of having played with hall-of-famers Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabaar and Michael Jordan all over the course of his career.

Worthy scored 16,320 points over the course of his career, spending more years a Laker than anyone not named Abdul-Jabbar, West, Fisher or Bryant. Known as “Big Game” James for his outstanding postseason performances, Worthy would average 3.5 more points per game in postseason play compared to the regular season, and would record his first career triple-double in Game 7 of the 1988 NBA Finals, garnering him Finals MVP honors on a team featuring Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabaar. Worthy’s jersey would later be retired at a special ceremony in The Forum, where it still hangs in Staples Center amongst his Showtime teammates along with other Laker greats West, Chamberlain, Baylor, Goodrich and, of course, longtime broadcaster Chick Hearn.

Quote of the Night: “I’m happy that we can see James go out and we can all smile. We’ll shed some tears later, but we can smile because he’s walking out happy, the way he wants to leave.” Former teammate Kareem Abdul-Jabaar, on James Worthy’s retirement – From the LA Times, Nov. 11, 1994.

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Stephen Dunn | Getty Images

In lieu of the regular season, Laker Nation has decided to take you back through Laker history to recap important games, record-breaking performances and memorable news from the past 64 years of the franchise. We understand that it’s not the basketball you may have been hoping for, but for the time being, it’s the closest we’ll get to reading about the Lakers on a basketball court.

NOVEMBER 9, 1990
SACRAMENTO KINGS 86 – LA LAKERS 100
NEW COACH MIKE DUNLEAVY GETS FIRST CAREER COACHING WIN

Things were looking different for the Lakers at the start of the 1990-91 NBA season. Longtime center Kareem Abdul-Jabaar had retired two seasons ago, Hall-of Fame coach Pat Riley had left the team after the 1989-90 season citing burnout, and the team had begun the season 0-2. New Laker coach Mike Dunleavy, in his first career head coaching position, was inserted into a job where championships were expectations.

So after whispers began to question whether Dunleavy was really going to be “the guy” that would continue the tradition of winning for the Lakers, it was a good thing that they had the 0-3 Sacramento Kings next on their schedule – the same 0-3 Sacramento Kings that had gone winless in 42 straight games spanning 16 years when visiting the Forum.

After a home-opening 125-123 overtime loss to the Portland Trailblazers three days prior, the Lakers would put together an effective game against the Kings, leading no less than nine points throughout the game. Second-year player Vlade Divac would score 10 points and bring down a then-career high 16 rebounds, with Magic Johnson providing 25 points and 13 assists in the 100-86 win.

Mike Dunleavy would get his first career win as a head coach, his team presenting him with a signed game ball in the locker room following the contest. Despite the rocky start to the season, Dunleavy would lead the Lakers to a 58-24 record during the 1990-91 season, going so far as to reach the 1991 NBA Finals before losing to the Chicago Bulls in Michael Jordan’s first of six NBA championships.

Quote of the Night: “I think,” said Dunleavy, looking pleased, “I’m not going to get shut out.” – Lakers coach Mike Dunleavy, on his first career win after an 0-2 start – From the LA Times, Nov. 10, 1990.

ALSO ON THIS DATE – NOVEMBER 9, 1985 – KAREEM HITS ANOTHER SCORING MILESTONE

Abdul-Jabaar would score 15 points in a 111-88 win over the New York Knicks, making it his 700 consecutive game scoring double-digit points.

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Photo by Getty Images

In lieu of the regular season, Laker Nation has decided to take you back through Laker history to recap important games, record-breaking performances and memorable news from the past 64 years of the franchise. We understand that it’s not the basketball you may have been hoping for, but for the time being, it’s the closest we’ll get to reading about the Lakers on a basketball court.

NOVEMBER 8, 1959
BOSTON CELTICS 115 – MINNEAPOLIS LAKERS 136
ELGIN BAYLOR SETS NBA RECORD WITH 64-POINT PERFORMANCE

From a time when the Lakers’ name stemmed from their actual location, the Minneapolis Lakers were coming off a season where rookie Elgin Baylor carried them to the NBA Finals, only to be swept by the Boston Celtics. After a sensational season that garnered Rookie of the Year honors, most basketball watchers expected Baylor to experience a sophomore slump, in part because of coaching turnover from the departure of the franchise’s lone coach John Kundla. However, in Baylor’s first date with Boston since the 1959 Finals sweep, slumping was last thought on Baylor’s mind.

In a 136-115 win over the Celtics, Baylor would score 64 points, a new NBA record eclipsing the standing record of 63 points by Joe Fulks set ten years prior. Baylor’s record would stand for a year before he would break own his mark by scoring 71 points against the New York Knicks. His 71 points would stay a Laker record for over 40 years until Kobe Bryant’s 81-point performance against the Toronto Raptors in 2006. The 136-115 win would give Boston their first loss of the season, against a talented roster that included Bob Cousy and Bill Russell, who would be held to three points in the game.

To put into context what Baylor accomplished that night, here is Baylor’s box score compared to the box score for Kobe Bryant’s 81-point performance in 2006, what many consider the greatest one-man scoring performance in modern NBA history:

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Our partners over at AM 570 FOX Sports L.A. are holding their 4th Annual ‘Paralyzed Veterans of America’ Radiothon on Wednesday. It’s a great cause to be a part of!

On November 9th, call 818-524-2930 to contribute and help a hero.

In an effort to pay tribute to the men and women who have fought for our country, and give back to those who have incurred a catastrophic injury, AM570 FOX Sports Los Angeles will honor U.S. military veterans on Wednesday, November 9th by hosting the 4th Annual commercial-free radio-thon from Noon – 7 p.m. PT.

AM570 FOX Sports Los Angeles has set a goal of $120,000 and all proceeds will benefit the Paralyzed Veterans of America, an organization dedicated to providing veterans rehabilitation, access to medical services, job training, and continuing research in finding a cure for paralysis.

The station is encouraging listeners to reflect on all the securities our nation’s military has provided to this great country, and to let our veterans know how much we value their service.

“This is a chance to give back to our family members, friends, neighbors and fellow Americans who have become paralyzed while fighting for our freedoms,” commented AM570 FOX Sports LA’s General Manager Don Martin. “This is our way of giving thanks for their ultimate sacrifice.”

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With the Lakers off to a poor start, trade rumors have begun to swirl around Kobe Bryant, leading many to speculate if he'll leave for greener pastures. Kobe puts those rumors to rest in his interview with Yahoo Sports.