The Lakers took a big swing on Kawhi Leonard. They missed. And in a matter of hours, they'd filled out most of the roster. So was it a success? We highlight the good and the less good, and give our overall grades to Rob Pelinka and the rest of the front office. From there, it's a question of where the Lakers fit in against a hyper-competitive Western Conference. Are LeBron and Anthony Davis enough? How good does the supporting cast need to be? Who are the wild cards that could make the...
Well, Wednesday was busy!
The Lakers fought of what seemed like the smart, safe, inevitable hiring of Ty Lue as their next head coach. Instead, they've plunged themselves deep back into the abyss of bad process, bad press, and bad optics heading into arguably the most consequential free agent summer in team history.
So what happens now? We discuss with Pete Zayas, the awesome curator of LakerFilmRoom. Find him at @LakerFilmRoom...
The Lakers need a new coach, and have sent the gang out to interview. That includes expected players like GM Rob Pelinka and owner Jeanie Buss, but also more eyebrow-raising folks like the Rambi, Kurt and Linda. What should we make of the current Lakers braintrust? And what should we think of the three primary coaching candidates they've interviewed?
What do Ty Lue, Monty Williams, and Juwan Howard offer? Who should they hire, and why?
All that, plus...
...a look at a great article from...
We all kind of knew how this movie would end, but getting there was nonetheless pretty interesting. The Lakers went through the trade deadline unable to pry Anthony Davis away from the Pelicans (because, in large part, the Pelicans had zero incentive to make a deal now). Still, it was a messy, public process in which basically everyone on the roster was rumored to be part of a package.
So what happens now? Are the Lakers still on the right path to restoring themselves to full glory. Is it...
What a week!
The Lakers are on a roll, pushing their record to 17-10 and drifting closer to the top of the Western Conference. Why? Because (among other things) LeBron James is still great, but also because the defense has become a top 10 group, and Kyle Kuzma is playing well on both ends (including stuff like rebounding and passing on the offensive side).
Even better, the Lakers are a team that can reasonably be expected to improve over the course of the season. If that's true, what's...
The Lakers finished off a successful homestand with a big win over the Spurs on Wednesday. LeBron James led the way, but he had some help down the stretch. That's the formula everyone wants, but can it last? Plus, Bleacher Report's Ric Bucher got Kevin Durant and a bunch of other players to go on record explaining why premier free agents might not flock to play with LeBron... and needless to say it caused some controversy. But once you get past some of the whining from K.D. about how...
The NBA is back! Like, officially!
And before it got going for real, we sat down for our annual predictions podcast, where we pick all the winners in both conferences, make our selections for the big awards, and cover some of the interesting overarching storylines that will define the year. Also, we talk about Paul George and the news he made this week.
Basically, once you've heard these 45 minutes, you can fastforward to the end of the year. Because we've told you everything that's...
We're thiiiiiiiiiiiis close to finishing up the pretend games, folks. So how are the Lakers looking?
Better, with Lonzo Ball back on the floor, for one. He made his debut this week, and while there's definitely some rust, overall his impact was pretty tangible. And with Lonzo back, the Lakers can now keep a ball mover on the floor at all times. That'll help the second unit. Meanwhile, with the preseason winding down, some of the stuff we thought the Lakers might not be very good at......
It's been a couple weeks, so apologies. - In this episode, we break down the schedule and all it means for the different forecasts currently bouncing around the NBA universe. There's a reason predictions on the Lakers seem to be all over the map.
Well, the Kawhi Leonard deal is done, and he's heading north. Very north. About as far from Los Angeles as Gregg Popovich could send him, really. The Toronto Raptors took this year's version of the OKC gamble,
More or less, at least. A week or so after signing LeBron James, L.A. has filled in some holes, and have done so with an eye to keeping people like us talking. So where have the Lakers done well? Did the botch the Julius Randle situation?
So the market seems to be percolating! Paul George! LeBron James! And now... Kawhi Leonard? How available is he? How much would/sho - So the market seems to be percolating! Paul George! LeBron James! And now... Kawhi Leonard? How available is he?
It's the first week without NBA basketball until the fall, and it came quickly given Golden State's thrashing of Cleveland in the Finals. We break down that brief series, then break into the key questions coming after. Things like: -
So... The Finals! It's the matchup everyone expected. Any reason to believe it won't end the way everyone expects? Do the Cavs have any real chance to pull the upset? And by that, we mean, "Does LeBron James have any real chance to pull the upset?
An unusual amount of Lakers related stuff to discuss, considering the time of year. L.A. isn't in the playoffs, and the Draft is still a few weeks away. Yet... - Julius Randle's free agency was in the news this week,
The Conference Finals are here, and in some ways are more interesting thanks to what happens after them, rather than during. What if Houston, now tied 1-1, goes down quickly from here on? What if the Celtics beat the Cavs (as we both think will happen)?
Switching gears this week, we talk Dodgers history with former ESPN colleague Jon Weisman, author of the new book, "Brothers in Arms: Koufax, Kershaw, and the Dodgers' Extraordinary Pitching Tradition." If you're a fan of the Blue,
Another year down, and another in the recent run of playoff-free seasons for the purple and gold. That said, was this a successful season for the Lakers? On the one hand, there was a nine-game improvement from last year to this one,
The Lakers have been among the best teams in the NBA since early January, but -- and stop us if this sounds familiar -- the injury bug threatens to derail the momentum. Josh Hart is already sidelined (likely) for the year after hand surgery,
So the Lakers have won four straight out of the break, and are 16-7 since early January, when they ended the nine-game losing streak. That's good for the third best record in the NBA. So are the Lakers legit now, and what does that mean for the rebuild?