This post contributed by forum member Vinsane.
Welcome to Round Ball Rants. Instead of starting a traditional blog I figured I’d start with a thread that I’ll update throughout the season when I have a “rant” worth writing about. The issues will be in bold and the rant will follow the issue. There will be no set amount of rants or any topic off limit. If you wish to e-mail me about a rant and be featured in our “Mailbag” section later in the year you can contact me at RoundBallRants@yahoo.com or reply to this thread.
Without further ado I bring you Issue #1 of Round Ball Rants.
The Los Angeles Lakers Are 0-3!
I’m going to tell you like Kobe told you, shut up.
You can point fingers all you want as to why the Lakers have yet to win a game since forming their version of a “mega-team” in the West. However, no amount of wins or losses for that matter justify the media’s take on the situation in Los Angeles. Nor the take on the situation by many of our own DSS members.
And you know who’s really to blame for all of this? LeBron James.
When LeBron won his first title last year, people wondered who the media would shift to as the “have to win player” in the NBA? Carmelo? No. Kevin Durant? Hardly. Kobe Bryant? Absolutely.
Before the words “Five Rings” spout out of your mouth take a moment to re-evaluate the situation following LeBron’s coronation.
Steve Nash and Dwight Howard join the Los Angeles Lakers. Kobe Bryant has now run out of excuses. There isn’t a Smush Parker to throw under the bus or a Phil Jackson to butt heads with in the media. There’s a team of talented players, all proven winners, and were granted the keys to the Western Castle when Oklahoma City traded James Harden without a second thought.
All of these things factor into just why the Media is riding Los Angeles so damn hard. Remember Miami circa 2010-2011? Off to a slow start and the media rode them hard all the way through January when they finally started to pick up steam.
And only after Mark Cuban asked them “How does my Dirk taste?” Did anyone really question whether or not Miami was going to win a title? Once they got in the groove? They were unstoppable.
The same thing will hold true for Los Angeles once they figure out how to play with one another. Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard are down low. You’re telling me you can think of another duo of big men with resumes that can even compare? You have arguably the most unselfish point guard to ever play the position and the most prolific scorer to pick up the round ball and you’re worried about an 0-3 start?
As the Sunday NFL Countdown crew would say… “C’MON MAN!”
The Los Angeles Lakers are fine. They’re more than fine in fact because, they play in the Pacific Division. With teams like Sacramento, Golden State, and Phoenix to feast on four times out of the year? There’s 12 wins right there.
So go ahead and blow up about Los Angeles because, by the time this is posted? They’ll already have a W in the column courtesy of the Detroit Pistons.
Boston is clearly a better team… not!
And I wonder, how the hell did almost everyone come up with the Boston Celtics as the second best team in the East? Oh, they were 48 minutes from the Finals last year? They’re not even the second best team in their division and people want to tell me that Boston can challenge an improved Heat squad for the Eastern crown?
I know it’s been said every year for the past three: The Boston Celtics are another year older. But, until this point? It has never held more true. Ray Allen seen it, Paul Pierce knows it’s true, and KG refuses to believe it. Well to my favorite “Thug” of the NBA? Believe it Big Ticket, your Celtic days are numbered.
Last place in the division and as for their improvements? Jason Terry is shooting an abysmal 38% from the floor and 28% from the arc. Jared Sullinger who’s started a game already this season is shooting 50% from the floor but has only attempted 10 shots in three games. Courtney Lee has shown flashes of being useful to Doc Rivers but, has had to combat Jeff Green and Terry for minutes on the floor.
Like the Lakers it’s too early to panic but, unlike the Lakers the hype around this squad is unjustified. You still have your “Big 3″ in Rondo, Pierce and KG. However. what do you have after that? This is where the Celtics are either going to live or die come May and June. If their bench guys don’t start picking up the slack it’s going to be a long season and a finish towards the bottom half of the seeding come playoff time.
The other thing hindering the Celtics? They’re too invested in what the Miami Heat are doing in South Beach. It’s hard to focus on a different opponent every night when the ghosts of LeBron James’ Game 6 performance dance in your head. Doc Rivers opened the wrong can of worms in telling his team to “Hate” the Heat. He forgot that 28 other teams play in this league and making it to the ECF a year ago doesn’t guarantee a return trip.
Back to L.A.: This is all Mike Brown’s fault…
Mike Brown absolutely sucks as a coach. That’s right! He sucked his way to the 2007 Finals and sucked his way as the head coach of the only Eastern Conference team to advance to the second round five consecutive years in a row. Something that neither Boston, Orlando, or Chicago could manage to do in that same time frame.
And LeBron is twice the man he was then, and ten times the basketball player now. Mike Brown was working with the likes of Eric Snow, Larry Hughes, Zydrunas Ilgauskas and dumb dumb Drew Gooden. While we’re at it does Andrew Melvin Gooden even play in this league anymore?
Mike Brown is not to blame for the Laker’s woes and certainly isn’t as terrible as a coach that everyone makes him out to be. And before you can pull a Mike Bell “Coach LeBron, win Coach of the Year award” argument? I’ll have you know that Mike has faced more adversity than an 0-3 start. He had to manage an immature and childish LeBron James and his posse on top of all his other duties.
Give Brown a break he’s a good coach who can manage a team of multiple egos. I’ll remind you, you never heard a peep out of Delonte West until the ship started to sink in Cleveland. Now he’s dominated the first week of NBA talks and he’s unemployed.
The Lakers knew what they were doing when they hired Brown. They knew he could manage egos and maintain a professional sense of business through tough times. He was Jim Tressel like in Ohio. Not that he reeked of scandal, that he could address the media and take a very senatorial approach to struggles.
Mike will hold this ship together through the bad and more importantly the good. The only fear anyone in L.A. should have of Mike Brown? Come playoff time will he play all twelve men or just stick to seven? The only flaw in his game as a coach to this point has been his inability to involve the bench when it’s needed most.
So back off Mike Brown!
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