Chris Webber Believes ‘Still Some Positive Things Happening’ For Lakers

Chris Webber Believes ‘Still Some Positive Things Happening’ For Lakers


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The season is quickly coming to a close for the Los Angeles Lakers and as a result a lot of questions have been asked about what the future holds for the storied franchise moving forward.

Although many of these questions have been unanswered, current NBA analyst and former Laker rival Chris Webber believes positive things can be taken from the season filled with disappointment according to Mark Medina of the L.A. Daily News:

“If you are a Lakers fan, you’re very upset about this season with the injuries to [Lakers veterans] Steve Nash and Kobe Bryant. But if you look forward to the future, these young guys like [Lakers guards] Kent Bazemore and Jodie Meeks are getting a lot of playing time. If they’re going to be on this team in the future, experience is what you need now since you are out of the playoff race. There are still some positive things happening [for the Lakers].”

With the Lakers set to have a high draft pick in the upcoming 2014 NBA Draft and a fair amount of cap space available, the team could make moves in the off-season to help right the ship. Those moves might not be instant game-changers the fans will be hoping for, but they could be steps in the right direction to get this franchise back on track.

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At this point in time, there’s been no indication on whether the Lakers are interested in keeping players like Jodie Meeks or Kent Bazemore. It’d be safe to assume that the roster will look considerably different next season, but Webber does have a point in terms of players like Bazemore and Meeks increasing their value with experience.

The Lakers currently only have Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, Nick Young (player option), Robert Sacre and Kendall Marshall under contract for next season. Young will likely opt-out of his deal while the team still needs to make a decision on whether to keep Nash, Sacre and Marshall.

Needless to say, drastic changes are on the horizon for the Lakers, but there’s still a lot of room for optimism with the flexibility the team will have in the off-season.
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  • Joseph Apohen

    The Lakers should keep Basemore and Meeks along with Farmar, Johnson, and Hill. Hopefully Young wil decide to stay. He is very good offensively and fun to watch. I think he brings great chemistry to the club. If Nash can play Farmar is a better backup than Marshall. Beside Basemore and Meeks can play the point. If Kobe comes at at least 90% and if Pau can be affordable to retain the Lakers can be competitive, not at a championship level until they sign some all star caliber players in 2015.

  • Lake Show

    Mike D’antoni needs to be fired for overplaying Kobe Bryant last season, lack of leadership, no direction or offensive plan, no defensive urgency, and wasting talent on the bench for unknown idiotic reasons (Chris Kaman)..players aren’t disliking the Lakers because of the franchise, its the coach that has discouraged many from thinkin LA will ever be great under his coaching. History doesn’t argue with this at all considering all the many years in Pheonix that his style did NOT lead to any jewelry and in the playoffs, it comes down to Gritt and Defense…jack up 3’s in the playoffs and you’ll be out in the first or second round…SUNS have proven that time and time again with both NASH and D’antoni.

  • Daryl Peek

    C. Webb hit it on the nail! Too many media IRE driven Lakers fans don’t want to hear or see the obvious. Player development is a big reason MDA is being considered to be kept. He’s done a great job at that this season and always has in the past. The anger most have regarding Kaman & Hill over playing time is a part of the player development solution. Sacre, Kelly, Johnson, Williams, ETC… all would have suffered in player development if MDA had stuck to a strict rotation. This was again, impossible to do given all of the injuries. In reality MDA was naturally forced to play musical chairs with players, PT. As I’ve detailed before on LN, Hill has started more games this season, 24 then he has in the previous four as a pro all together combined. He’s also averaging more MPG than he ever has. The role beef he has is somewhat understandable but not unreasonable on MDA’s part given this is the first time he’s ever been given this much of a workload by any coach. How could you truly be mad at a HC that gave you a platform to shine where no other was willing to? Kaman has changed his tone for this very reason. Kobe has calmed for that reason also.

    The losing sucks but 262 games missed due to injury and counting, is the culprit more than anything.

    • nlruizjr

      Daryl, I understand where you are coming from but you don’t put player development ahead of winning, for instance against Portland your best rebounder and active defender was sitting on the bench the whole game. If the coach can’t understand who is going to help you win the game then you have to make those adjustments and it appears that Dantoni has had the same formula the past 2 seasons, he has one system in mind and that’s 15 seconds or less and limited defense, sorry but that system will not win championships and he has proven that time and time again. He has overplayed Gasol, when he could have gotten quality minutes from kaman and/or Hill by rotating as required, granted Kelly has improved but he is not Kaman or Hill and Dantoni just can’t understand that. You seem to want to give Dantoni a pass but it’s the coaches job to know who your players are and what situations to use them best and Dantoni to my knowledge has not been able to make those adjustments even tho we had a miserable year with injuries, frankly the lakers are not the only team in the NBA with injury problems but that’s when the coaching comes in !!!!!! Good Post tho !!!!

      • Daryl Peek

        No disrespect man but most of what you just stated is typical, in a vacuum generalization of what D’Antoni does as a coach within the framework of his system.

        Let me start with Hill. He is not our best defender or rebounder. Hill is very inconsistent as a heavy minutes player. Remember the stint early in the season when he was the first big off the bench and or started often as he was on beast mode for several games? MDA was giving him about 28-32 MPG consistently but Hill is an energy player and cannot sustain that for several games strung together. Hill does not block shots often and is as bad as Gasol or Kaman in the high PNR defense. Hill often gets in foul trouble when he’s fatigued from playing heavy minutes in a previous game. Hill has played in 64 games this season between PF & C. Most games played in of all the big’s. In contrast Kelly has played in 51 games and averages 21 MPG VS. 20 for Hill. Sacre has played in 57 games and averages 16 MPG. Kaman is the low man having only played in 39 games averaging 19 MPG. I’ve heard others say Gasol has been over used this season? That is completely false given he’s averaging a career low 31.4 MPG. MDA eased Pau back into the minutes rotation early on as he was recovering from his off-season knee procedure. There was a point where Gasol complained about it, citing he could not get into a rhythm. This was during the time Hill was getting solid minuted as the first big off the bench when they were lighting it up as the #1 bench in the NBA often winning games for us. That’s what you call adaptation in trying to win games. MDA has often left the hot group on the court this season in trying to win games. 7/15 second offense is not the goal of the system. Uptempo in getting into the offensive set is what he preaches coupled with ball movement. PNR is the steady diet of the half court sets but Gasol has resisted that often, almost the same way Howard did. Kaman fairs better playing in the system than Pau because he works the system. This is why Hill and Sacre thrive when the PG’s are on with their PNR setups. MDA lets Pau work outside of the system to be effective. This is the flexibility he’s shown this season. He did so last season but he draws the line on floor spacing and that is what caused the twin tower angst.

        Whenever our assists are up as a team we usually win. The problem comes in the freedom he allows them in taking any open shot. It’s a catch 22 given the youngsters he’s been forced to use this season. You can’t expect him to discourage them by changing that developmental freedom that allows a Bazemore, Farmar, Young, X, Meeks, Hill, Kelly. and Marshall to thrive in the system. MDA has done nothing but make adjustments as Lakers HC. He’s had to with all of the injuries. Again, if Kaman had gotten more minutes we’d still not know what we have in Sacre, Hill and Kelly. Kaman backed off his MDA ire because he realized the benefit of the player development that has gone on this season. A healthy Kobe, Blake, Nash and Gasol would have seen the rotations be more settled. Without them he had to stay stuck in discovery mode because of the players not being use to starter minutes. Again, the injuries further complicated this. Too much emphasis on blame game by most when it has not been that simple.

      • Jamar

        The Defending 2 time NBA champions style of play was highly influenced by the MDA system. That system CAN win championships. The Lakers as it stands right now has a D-League roster, and no offense be it MDA, Triangle, Motion, Pick & Roll, can win with that kind of roster devoid of youthful talent.

        • LaBullyBalls

          Any system Lebron, Wade and Bosh are in is going to produce a Championship. Let’s not pretend the style has anything to do with it

          • Terrell

            Oh so it’s the players now, I thought it was about the system which what all you Laker fans are crying about? You Laker fans say just kick D’Antoni and his sytem out and all is fine. The Triangle, Motion, P&Roll, whatever system, won’t work with this D-League roster.

    • independentbynature

      Daryl…How can I say this and not be offensive?I guess I cant.You are full of it.Sorry,had to say it.The BS was just too deep…Waay too deep.Antoni has to go and Webber hates the Lakers.Always has,always will.

      • Daryl Peek

        No explanation to back your assessment. I’ll just file you into one of the many who just dissent without solid facts to back. Webber is an analyst now and what good does holding onto petty past beef do for him now? If anything that could jeopardize his standing with his network.

        • independentbynature

          Daryl,you have become a poster boy for everything that is wrong with the Lakers Mgt.Losing,incompetence and mediocrity are not only excusable to you,they are acceptable and even preferable.You and I must be wired about as different as two people can be.From the time I was a little boy,losing has been unacceptable to me.I couldn’t play tiddly winks without going all out.Were you always like this or did you just lose your competitive fire somewhere along the way?Have you ever played sports?Because there is only one way to play.I play to win and I play for keeps.And I expect nothing less from my Lakers.You know,they have meds for low T,now.Maybe you and Jimmy should check with your doctor.You keep bashing all of us who refuse to accept these mediocre Lakers.But you,are the one who is letting emotion cloud reason.This season needs NO “explanation,”no clarification.Just LOOK at it.It is pathetic.If the Lakers retain Antoni for next season,I will not watch one more game of this pitiful excuse for basketball until he is fired.You can watch it all by yourself,if you can stomach it and keep making excuses for Jimmy and Antoni.I love the Lakers and PROFESSIONAL basketball too much to accept this.Not one decent big in the NBA is going to play for small ball Antoni next year.Hill will be gone.Gasol will be gone.Kaman will be gone.And no one is coming to replace them.Once you start to accept mediocrity,that’s all you’ll ever get and that’s all you’ll deserve.Sorry to come down so hard on you,but I just cannot fathom where you are coming from.It is not in my nature.Thank God.Good luck with your new look Lakers.They are making me sick to my stomach.

          • Daryl Peek

            Yet again, no facts, just a bottom line I’m mad as hell and I ain’t gonna take it! This team has been without its five top players most of the season. There’s no excuse in that! That’s real and something people like you don’t want to acknowledge as a problem? No team wins like that, period. Of course I hate the losing but no team wins all of the time. Sometimes you have to accept a reboot is in order. This is one of those times in Lakers history, and it’s not the first nor will it be the last. Miss me with the other BS.

          • independentbynature

            All you post is more and more pathetic excuses,Daryl.No accountability at all.You are hopeless.

          • Daryl Peek

            Far from hopeless. Hopeless is all of the dissenter stuck on short term memory, like the team has never been here before. Accountability is having patience’s and resolve when things look bleak. Anybody can kick and scream while pointing fingers. When does or has that ever fixed anything?

            A wise man that was once the HC of the Lakers often practiced, preached and embodied patience’s, calm and trust.

  • 3339

    best thing to happen would be dantoni getting fired.
    We need to have a leader in here. dantoni is not that guy.
    dantoni is like a disease on our team, and we must have it taken care of so we can get back to what the Lakers franchise is all about, winning.

  • Scott Asai

    He would say this as a former queen. He’s still bitter about the Lakers ALWAYS beating the queens.

  • quickster007

    Oh well, the Lakers will be like the Clippers of 10 years ago. Mediocre team plus three overpaid has been. Jim Buss and Jeanie Buss should just sell the team. It’s hard to imagine the Lakers with the worst record in its history. It means going back all the way when they were called the Minneapolis Lakers. It’s sad that Jerry Buss bought this current team from Jack Kent Cooke back in 1979 and made it into a powerhouse. It only took one season for Jim Buss to make it one of the worst in its history. Jeanie Buss should fire his brother for reaching the highest level of incompetence in managing the Lakers. .

  • independentbynature

    Who does Webber think he’s fooling?He hates the Lakers.I keep hearing him praising Antoni.He’s laughing his ass off behind our backs.

  • KBKD