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Lakers Draft News: Australian PG Dante Exum Declares For Draft Reviewed by Momizat on . While it was widely assumed that Australian point guard Dante Exum would declare for the 2014 NBA Draft, as he is expected to be one of the first few people sel While it was widely assumed that Australian point guard Dante Exum would declare for the 2014 NBA Draft, as he is expected to be one of the first few people sel Rating: 0
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Lakers Draft News: Australian PG Dante Exum Declares For Draft

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While it was widely assumed that Australian point guard Dante Exum would declare for the 2014 NBA Draft, as he is expected to be one of the first few people selected, it had not been made official until today.

ESPN’s Chad Ford reported that Exum officially declared for the draft and hired well known agent Rob Pelinka to represent him:

At 6’6 with a wingspan of 6’9, Exum has great size for the point guard position. At only 18 years of age he is still very young, and one of the more raw prospects in the draft, but his potential exceeds nearly everybody in this class.

He is an excellent ball-handler and passer, who excels in the open floor and has a great basketball IQ. He led the Australian U-17 National Team to a Silver Medal at the 2012 FIBA World Championships, so he has excelled on some very big stages.

One thing he will have to improve on is his jump shot as that is his most glaring weakness, but that can come with time. Most people would compare him in both build and skill to Philadelphia 76er rookie Michael Carter-Williams.

The hiring of Pelinka as his representation is also interesting as Pelinka also represents Kobe Bryant. Exum is one of the most intriguing options in this draft. He is definitely a risky pick, but he could immediately change the fortunes of the Lakers if they were to take him.

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About The Author

Corey is currently a full-time staff writer for Lakers Nation. He is a passionate follower of the Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Cowboys and can usually be seen arguing the merits of Kobe Bryant or cursing the decisions of Jerry Jones. He is also a former producer and associate producer for Sirius XM Sports Radio. Follow him on twitter @TheeCoreyH

Number of Entries : 883
  • Daryl Peek

    Why would Exum be the answer at PG? I thought everyone was sold on Farmar and Marshall as the future at PG for the Lakers?!?

    • Jim213

      The draft just went up another notch…

      Bench players yes but starter is a different story, aside of this he’ll actually end up being a 2 player as many analyst observe. Strong shooter that needs to develop better accuracy.

    • ZirtBirt .

      we wont get parker, wiggins, embiid or randle. so the best choice for la would be a pg. i like farmar and kendall, but they are good coming from the bench. we need a player for the future and this guy would be a good choice (or smart). but i expect a pick between 8 and 12. so we will see.

      • cj

        who says we wont get a top 3 pick? were are 7th worst in the nba and have a 6% chance at the number 1 pick. we are all so the worst team in the nba since the turn of the year. we could have the worst record in the west before its all said and done.

        • Joseph Apohen

          You never know with Jim Buss doing the picking. We might get another Bynum or worse another Bennett.

          • Daryl Peek

            Hindsight revisionism. Bynum was a great pick at #10. Who can predict degenerative knee issues? If not for injury Bynum could very well be the best center in the NBA right now. Farmar was a good pick so was Sasha, Luke Walton and Ronnie Turriaf. These are the guys drafted under Mitch and Jimmy with what few draft picks we had when we were a little down in 04 & 05. All contributed to the success of 07-10, and lets not forget the good FA pick ups along the way.

            Championship building is a cycle and unfortunately we are in the down cycle right now. Too much piling on looking for a scapegoat right now. Dr. Buss and Jerry West had a much longer drought from 88-89 – 98-99. Were the Daggers flowing as they are now back then?

          • Joseph Apohen

            Not just the knees but his head and bad attitude.

          • Daryl Peek

            Phil Jackson once said of a young Kobe in 2004 “I can’t work with this kid!” he was coming from a place of viewing Kobe as a head case (stubbornness) and having a bad attitude. Del Harris said the same thing basically. Phil even wrote a book about it. Kobe was 25 at the time Bynum is 26. Apples to oranges but you get the point.

          • Joseph Apohen

            Gifted athletes as in a gifted child usually are far ahead of everyone else and march to a different beat of the drum. They usually become very successful. That’s not the case with Bynum

          • Daryl Peek

            “Bynum is not quite mature, but everyone should relax and watch him grow up,” Jackson said via email. “This year has been a big step for him offensively…nice to see…and when he takes up the mantle as defensive captain the Lakers can get back in the hunt.”

            The Zen master see’s a case for Bynum.

          • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

            I think the situation today is different than that of the 88-98 season.. FO office still see a window of opportunity to win with Kobe. I am sure there will be trades and big name signing this coming off season. I just feel it…. stay positive people!

            Go Lakers!

          • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

            along the way, we drafted Farmar, Vujacic, Turiaf, Bynum… no big deal…

            30+ years of being a fan… I have seen better times than this… injury wise this is the worst… but not line-up/talent wise, to tell you the truth. .

          • Daryl Peek

            Eras begin, eras end. No team is without its ups and downs in the cycle of contending. Folks are acting like the Lakers have never been down before. Of course there’s the uncertainty of Dr. Buss being gone but again nothing last forever.

            They saw a window of winning with Kobe with eyes on the future when they tried to pull the CP3 deal. The nix sent them reeling. They went to a reactionary plan B in trying to build the super team last season still with eyes on the luxury tax day of reckoning looming. Most had high praise for that attempt at the time of it. Things didn’t workout and now all the blame game daggers in revision.

            Change is rarely an easy transition. Dr. Buss was set up in a perfect situation with Sharman, West and all who were in place coupled with the status of the team when he purchased it. The sequel rarely lives up to the original but that does not mean the sequel will always be a complete flop.

          • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

            People really have to have a history to understand how this franchise works…. it’s a shame that a lot of people here just spew things, many things without understanding history….

    • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

      I, too, wonder why everyone is discounting Marshall. The guy has been putting up great assist numbers, people seem impressed with him. Averaging nearly 10 assists a game? When’s the last time a Laker has done THAT?

      From a fan perspective, I’d like to see them develop Marshall, and look towards finding us a scorer or post presence. When Kobe is gone, who’s going to put up the points?

  • LakersHeatBeef

    I like Dante Exum this is huge news for the Lakers and their draft prospects come 2014 draft night.I am under the belief Dante Exum can become a shooting guard in the NBA and he has the size and scoring mentality to do it.

    He reminds me of a young Penny Hardaway and that is because he can handle the rock and score while playing defense,the Lakers got tons of guards but i would never say no to this guy.But nothing is for certain as of now anyways.I like his game a lot and he really seems NBA ready already.

    • Joseph Apohen

      Huge only if he is available when the Lakers make their selection. If not do what some of the NFL clubs do. Take the best that is available.

      • JB

        well, he probably will be the best. Hes a top 4 pick

  • LA_BLUE_CREW

    In this order

    Embiid
    Exum
    Parker
    Wiggins
    Randle
    Gordon
    Smart

    • Jim213

      Don’t know if Embiid or Parker will become part of the lottery but they have about 10 days after the season is over to decide 4/27/14. However, the NCAA tournament should be good this season which can either increase or minimize potential lottery picks.

      Not forgetting the Jazz or Raptors who have certain players in mind too.

    • JB

      smart>randle

  • The Scout

    As long as Dante Exum doesn’t smoke pot or drink the Lakers should draft him if they see the need for him as their guard.He reminds me of Michael Jordan and he will be the next Kobe if the Lakers draft him.Best international player i have ever seen and i been watching closely for 40 years now.Kid is better than Manu or Pau or Dirk were coming into the NBA.This kid Exum is very special,one of a kind.And if he is sober and image clean he will be great for any team.Great young man.

    • vdogg

      is he more of a SG? i thought he was a pure PG.

      • The Scout

        Well yes he is a combo guard at this stage of his career.He is 6’6″ in height 198cm and his listed weight is 188 pounds.He plays both Point Guard and Shooting Guard but he has a knack for scoring more than he does passing.

        My scouting report on Dante Exum is the same as the one i had on Kobe Bryant when he was entering the NBA draft.

        Kobe was projected as a point guard by some they thought he had some Magic Johnson in his game,well he did but he also had way more Michael Jordan in his game,i see the same for Dante Exum once he enters the NBA.Exum will be a huge scorer.

        • Joseph Apohen

          How about Dante and Westbrook at the guard positions? They will have to decide who will be the conductor of the team. What a problem to have!!

      • JB

        hes a tweener. but good at both

    • JB

      Jordan? cmon lol

  • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

    IT;s rather unseemly to say he would be the answer at the point… the draft is still months away and we have games to win… whatever the draft postion the lakers turn out to be… I just hope they draft the best talent on available.

    • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

      Surely you meant “games to lose”? Winning at this point hurts us more than it helps.

      • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

        disagree with you.. unless you are Markazi… winning at this point helps the team tremendously, as it will build the team momentum, and give a lot of experience to the young guns…. this team hasn’t even played a single game with a full roster… they have yet to find their roles as a team. And that cannot happen until every one is on board healthy. But as it is, a team should always go for a win and play to win… if you play to lose, you end up having a habit of losing… and that cannot be good for any sports not to mention team sports. Any athlete knows this, any coach knows this…. only people who haven’t played sports willl think otherwise.

        • Joseph Apohen

          Even if management orders them to play to lose, I don’t think it is going to happen as most of the group are auditioning for a bigger contract. I sure would hate to lose Meek, Hill, Johnson, Young, Farmar, and X as I enjoy watching them. There will also be a lot of inquiries for Marshall who has played really well.

          • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

            Exactly. GM’s are people too… and they watch would be free agents closely…I wouldn’t want a player on my team that doesn’t care about winning, and playing hard, battling for possessions, etc. That’s just absurd for them to get players like that, if I am a GM. So, how would playing to tank help the players again?

          • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

            Again, I didn’t say “The players need to go out and try to lose”. I am simply arguing that winning is “Good for now, bad for the future”.

            Quite a few of the players we have now are bad. No other way to put it. They’re going to keep losing because they are simply outmatched. What we DON’T need is our starters and stars rushing themselves to “salvage” a horrible season. Let these guys rest, let them get 100%, and then EASE them back into the games.

        • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

          If this was the team we were going to have for a while, I’d say 100% we should be working on building chemistry, building a winning mentality. But, it’s not. At least half of our healthy players could be on a different squad next season. So, the Lakers you see now could be completely different than the Lakers you see next season. One bad season doesn’t develop a “losing mentality” when the turnover will be so great, and ESPECIALLY on a team with Kobe Bryant. He refuses to have a losing mentality.

          So, if we go out and start winning games, guess what happens? Our draft pick drops. Then, come season’s end we’re stuck with a bad draft pick, and potentially huge team turnover ANYWAY. Our saving grace for the FUTURE is the potential for a great player in the draft.

          As a fan, I know we’re going to let a lot of these guys go, so I want to see us get a good pick. I want to see our veterans rest, get healthy, and get into the offseason in one piece. I want a player of the future for the Lakers. I don’t care who it is, as long as he’s a beast, but drafting outside the top 5 drops those odds quite a bit. You win games, you don’t get that top draft pick.

          • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

            I don’t get it why would you place so much stake on the draft… since when did a team become championship caliber in 2 years? ONly Magic in his rookie season did that.. the odds of repeating that again is close to 0, and that 1980 team was built with the combination of trades and the #1 draft.. The ;least years to build through the draft is on the average of 5-7(OKC) years if you get LUCKY!. How is the draft helping the llakers by waiting 5-7 years, with no clear sureness? Management knows this, I don’t understand why people fail to see this. Oh, I get it. It’s because some talking heads over at ESPN said something about it.

          • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

            I’m not placing “so much stake in the draft.” I’m explaining that fewer wins leads to better odds at a top pick, and top picks lead to better odds at a great player.

            I’ll propose a question to you. Which sounds like a better recipe for the FUTURE success?

            1. Lakers play to win. They develop decent chemistry with this rag-tag group of players. As our starters heal, these players are cut, replaced, and forgotten about. Each player reinserted into the line up screws with the chemistry a bit. They win enough games to drop themselves to a 10-15th spot in the draft. Outside of the Top 10, the talent USUALLY drops off quite a bit. Chances are much higher our draft pick is a mediocre talent, used as a role player.

            -or-

            2. Our starters take their sweet time healing. Lakers realize that this season is gone. They DON’T put their pride in the way. We continue to lose (which we’re probably going to do whether we try or not). We get a Top 3-5 pick. In that Top 5 pick, we draft a player with a lot of talent. You can pick a scorer to be groomed by Kobe in Parker or Wiggins. If you think we need a post presence, you’ve got one in Embiid or maybe Randle. A PG to distribute the rock and run the offense is available with Exum and Smart. Doesn’t matter, there’s a top level talent for each of those. We get that Top 5 pick, and have a much better chance of him turning into a good player for the future.

            It’s common knowledge: The higher your pick, the more options you have, and the better available talent. Teams scout the hell out of these players.

            Also, many of the players we have playing now are role players and D-Leaguers asked to step into starting roles and win. Even if they’re trying, they’re simply not good. I’m happy with them losing.

            Either way, it’s likely we re-sign Marshall, Farmar, Blake, Meeks, Henry, Young, and Gasol (If we haven’t traded him). Most likely, these guys are season long contracts, unless the front office is really impressed. They’ll fill the holes with more 1-season contracts, leaving us with room in 2015 to go after Kevin Love, and potentially others.

            In 2015, our team will most likely NOT be a “championship contender”, but this is our ONLY draft pick for how many years? It is TREMENDOUSLY important to make the most of it. Can we predict the future? Nope. Everything is based off chance here, but the better our pick, the BETTER OUR CHANCE.

          • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

            again… it’s only chances are…. chances are even if we lose, we still pick at the middle of the first round… that is putting too much egg on chances… that is not the way you envisioin building a competitive team… As we have seen from history, the best way to build a champioship team is through trades and free agency, I am not discounting the merit of the draft… but the chances through the draft is too long and too few… and your hypothetical questions are just that… hypothetical… you don’t build a team like that and you don’t base your future on hypothetical questions.

          • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

            Right now, we’re sitting at 6th. Half game from 5th, and 2 games from 3rd. If we keep losing at the pace we are now, we’ll probably be in that 3rd or 4th spot with potential to hit that 2nd spot.

            I’m also not putting everything on the draft, nor am I saying we “build through the draft”. It can be done, and it has been done. However, the draft is ONE player. But that ONE needs to be the best one we can get. We don’t have a first rounder until what, 2018? I don’t think we have ANY draft picks for the next couple years. This one HAS to count. The higher our pick, the better our chances.

          • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

            as you have said…. much better chance of our pick turning out to be a good one… and equally a good chance it turns out to be a bust. I would go for a proven veteran, than a pick…

          • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

            I have mentioned going for a proven veteran. Kevin Love has talked about wanting to be a Laker, but we have nothing to trade for him. So, we’d have to wait for him to opt out in 2015, and sign him as a Free Agent.

            It’s unlikely we land any big talent this off-season, and most of what we will sign will probably be 1-year contracts to open some cap space for Love and another big potential signing in 2015 or 2016.

          • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

            regarding players for next season… how would you know they will want to go to other teams? That’s reading too much into the future. The least this team can do is to play hard, build chemistry, and try to win as many games as possible, if they want their stock to go high. Not playing to win now will only lessen their chances of landing a good contract. Isn’t that the right way of looking at things if you are a player? Yes?

          • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

            I’m assuming because many of these players were brought up from the D-Leagues. The only players of note on our CURRENT squad are Young, Marshall, Kelly, and Gasol. Plus, we’ve been looking to move Gasol for a while. He hits free agency this year, so there’s always that, too.

            Farmar, Henry, and Bryant are the main injuries that have a future in LA. Everyone else is a “maybe”.

            As for the players wanting to impress and get contracts, good luck. The players we have playing for us now are simply not good players. They were back up plans for back up plans. Sure, they can play hard, they can impress GMs and coaches, and they can earn contracts. W-L records don’t equal talent. (Gasol was on a horrible Memphis team when we acquired him)

          • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

            that there is your problem… you assume too much that what you assume will come true… aint no way to build a team like that.

          • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

            Okay, look. The Lakers are a bad team. They were a bad team to start the season, but had some hope. Now, they’re a horrible team because of injuries. They’re running a squad full of D-League talent.

            Harris: D-Leaguer until just recently
            Sacre: D-Leaguer signed last season for depth.
            Kelly: D-Leaguer brought up for depth

            Kaman: Isn’t getting PT

            Blake: 33yr old PG who is getting injured a lot the past few years
            Nash: 39yr old PG who might retire if he can’t stay healthy. Only 6 games this season!

            Johnson: He’s been starting, but he’s been bad. 40% career FG%? 34% from 3? Poor defense. He’s a D-League talent, and was a bench player in PHX last year
            Hill: Energy player best suited to come OFF THE BENCH
            Farmar: Was playing ball in Turkey last season, but young with potential OFF THE BENCH
            Meeks: Tossed into a starting role once Nash went down, but he’s best OFF THE BENCH
            Young: I like this guy, but so far he’s been coming OFF THE BENCH
            Henry: Before the injuries, he was coming OFF THE BENCH

            Marshall: D-Leaguer brought up for depth, playing QUITE well. Needs a better shot
            Kobe: Obviously a great player, but he’s 35!
            Gasol: Great player, but he’s 33 and MAY be traded

            So look at our current roster.

            D-League Players (4): Kelly (potential), Harris, Marshall (playing quite well), Sacre

            Old/Injury Prone (2): Blake, Nash

            Bench Players (6): Hill, Farmar, Meeks, Young, Henry

            Bad (1): Johnson

            Doesn’t Play (1) Kaman

            Talented Starters (2): Bryant (injury issues, 35), Gasol (Might be traded, FA this offseason, 33)

            So if you look at the big picture, we COULD be looking at this roster next season

            PG: Marshall, Farmar (Bench)
            SG: Bryant (Old), Meeks (Bench)
            SF: Henry (Bench), Young (Bench)
            PF: Kelly (D-League w/ Potential), Hill (Bench)
            C: Gasol (Maybe), Sacre (D-League)

            That’s two old stars on the decline, five guys who have been coming off the bench, one guy with great potential, one with okay potential, and one with no visible potential. That is not a team of the future. What happens if Gasol is gone? Boom, we’ve got Sacre as our starting center if we don’t sign anyone. NO THANK YOU.

            A lot of this roster won’t be on the Lakers next season. Even fewer around the season after that. We don’t need to “rally around this squad and build chemistry”. We need to make sure the guys who WILL be back next year are healthy. We need to make sure we make it to the end of the season without breaking Kobe, Gasol, or any of the younger guys with potential.

          • Daryl Peek

            Continuity is a key in building a championship contender. Teams that think tank are rarely focused on continuity. Deconstruction constantly consumes them in trying to go from worst to first. It’s truly a lottery mentality. That’s not solid foundation for winners. Many will call the Lakers way arrogant but those with a proven history of success are always seen as arrogant to those who want what they have.

            The thing that baffles me is the comparison to teams that still have not won championships? These so called teams that have suddenly become great from tanking still have no hardware. Augmenting your strategy a bit to fit the times is fine, especially given the FO change but it’s not wise to emulate a losers philosophy in trying to recapture glory you’ve already established in the past.

          • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

            Ok, would you rather have a chance to pick 3rd-5th, or a chance to pick 15th? It’s pretty much that simple.

            Most of the players on the team currently won’t last long. They’re bench players, D-League players, and 33+ year old injury prone guards. Two talented players, one is likely to be gone this offseason, next at best, and the other is likely to retire within the next few years.

            ONE season of losing isn’t going to magically instill this “losing” mentality. Next year we don’t have a draft pick. Losing does absolutely no good.

            The mentality IS: Focus on getting healthy. Bring a few guys back this offseason. Sign some more 1-year deals. Draft the player we THINK fits our future the best. Come out next year and try to make a splash. 2015, hope Love opts out, and hope we can sign him.

          • Daryl Peek

            You don’t project your team losing to get a draft pick, period. Losing absolutely instills a losers mentality. Were watching it spiral in that direction right now. The team is somewhat accepting losing because of all the injures and you can clearly see the difference in the fight they now have VS. earlier in the season. You can’t entertain tanking on a premeditated basis at all!!

            I lose all respect for this organization if they did. If you flat out sting due to extreme circumstances like this season or the post Magic 90′s Lakers, cool. Kobe, Pau, Nash (if he can get right) will never abide in tanking. They would all ask to be traded first.

          • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

            I am with you on this Daryl… I cannot imagine rooting for a team that would even consider tanking to get a high pick… better lose your limb fighting than not fighting at all.

          • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

            sorry, but losing to get a high pick is a bad bad bad precedent for any team…. I would NOT go near it….

          • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

            Stop with this “they’re losing on purpose” mentality. Just stop. That is NOT what I’m saying. Not at all.

            What I AM saying is to let the guys we have go out and do their own thing. The guys who are INJURED need to take extra time to make sure they’re healthy. No rushing back, no maybes. Make 100% sure they’re good to go, with no lingering issues, no “other” issues.

            Then, just work on figuring out who we want back next year. Consider the remaining 38 games a “try out”. Don’t pressure the guys to make something out of this season. Don’t let your pride get in the way. Go out, play basketball, and figure out who we want back next year. Cut the excess. If we lose? Fine.

            As a FAN, I know losing is the best thing for our team FOR THE FUTURE. I’m pretty confident that we only have one horrible season, since Kobe will be back and there is absolutely no losing mentality when Kobe is there.

          • Daryl Peek

            Our players are all warriors that will not accept anything but fighting to get back on the court. It’s not in their DNA to rest til next season therefore NO TANKING. The win loss results will fall where they may with maximum effort.

            Here’s what taking on the losers mentality does to the physicke:

            “What’s hard is that his individual success hasn’t yet translated into wins for his team. The Magic lost 62 games last season and are on pace to lose about the same again in 2013-14.

            “If anything, that’s what hurts the most,” Afflalo said. “It’s important that I keep the proper perspective on how things can change so fast in the NBA and to stay positive when you’re not winning.

            “But [losing] is what probably bothers me the most. It’s my impact on winning games, night in and night out. When I’m not feeling that, that’s tough to handle.

            “I won a state championship in high school, we got to the Final Four in college [UCLA], in Detroit and Denver I was used to 50-win teams. So this really has been the toughest transition in my life. I’ve never been in a losing situation at all in my life.”

            Afflo is not even a NBA championship proven player but the stench of losing sticks in ways you can’t imagine when you’re forced to accept it. Worst to first is a hard road to toll. Rarely do teams turn around the next season or even a few years later. Howard’s been gone from Orlando two seasons. Cleveland has been without LeBron for several seasons. The Bulls allowed internal strif to push them to tank after Jordan in 98 and have not been back to the finals since. I know this is extreme in apples to oranges comp but the post Jordan Bulls were absolutely awful after the tank, and Krause is as good of a talent evaluator as West was. He was on the Lakers staff in the 70′s as a college scout with West under Sharman. Tanking is a game of chance that’s too much of a risk for this franchise. Well get a good draft pick regardless IMO simply because they are actually focusing on using the first round pick this coming draft. Something they have not done since Bynum was drafted.

          • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

            You can’t argue with the fact that a higher pick means better CHANCES picking a future great. Is it uncertain? Oh yes. Countless top 5 picks in D-Leagues, bouncing around teams, etc.

            Orlando, and Cleveland are small markets. They don’t have the history, the legacy, the market, the environment, or the fan base that the Lakers do. This leads to LA having tremendous success in signing free agents. That’s what we’re going to have to do to get back to prominence, because we’ve never really been ones to build through the draft. However, this ONE season, I’d like to see us get a great pick, and I’m aware that losing only improves our chances.

            When Kobe comes back, he’ll push everybody. No doubt about that. I’m not worried about “developing a losing mentality” after one season.

          • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

            Picking a future great? hahahahahaha… how do you know it will turn out great? As I have said… you are putting too much stock on the draft…. Lakers strategy has always been, sign free agents… acquire veterans through trades… if there is a 1st round pick… bring him along… but no way aiming to lose to get higher pick… that’s just bad bad bad culture… it’s like a poison… once you are poisoned it does not remain at the point where the poison entered… it spreads to the whole system… and that is what happened to teams who entertained it.

          • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

            For the millionth time: TRYING TO LOSE is very different than NOT FORCING PEOPLE BACK INTO THE LINEUP BEFORE THEIR BODIES ARE 100%. I’m encouraging the second (Kobe should take his sweet ass time, as should Nash, and Pau should rest if he’s injured) NOT the first.

            Trying to lose: Oh, we could probably win this, but let’s miss a few shots or not try that hard

            Understanding the season is lost and being smart: “Oh, I’m healing, but still feeling a little pain in my injury. Since we’re not in the hunt for anything, I’ll take some extra time to make sure I’m good.”

            See the difference?

            Second, where did all of these great players come from? The draft. You keep ignoring the part where I say CHANCE. Every signing, every draft pick, every move is a CHANCE. Some CHANCES are far less of a risk, and the draft is definitely a big CHANCE. The higher your pick, the better yours ODDS. It’s still a GAMBLE, but you have better ODDS. I’ve never argued it wasn’t, yet you keep implying that I am.

            You keep asking me how I know, yet I’ve never said I have. You keep telling me I’m putting too much stock in the draft despite the fact that I’ve said it’s only ONE player, despite the fact that I’ve talked about how we have no picks next year, despite the fact that I’ve talked about FREE AGENCY next off season (2015), despite the fact that I’ve talked about re-signing some of the players from THIS squad and DEVELOPING them.

          • Daryl Peek

            No ones saying force anyone back into a lineup before they’re 100%. But it seems you’d prefer they sit out longer than optimal recovery suggests. The mindset of elite athletes on this level is to push limits. That’s how they got there in the first place. You can’t coddle that in premeditated hopes of losing games to improve draft position. They will not take extra time to see if they are good in the extended time frame you seem to want. Blake, Farmar, Kobe and Nash are all being very mindful of full recovery before coming back. Again they are also pushing their limits to actually get back which again you seem to be against. If I’m reading you wrong, my badd.

          • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

            I’m saying that because we all know Kobe is the type to push himself back. Nash is one serious injury away from being done with basketball. Gasol and Blake are also 33 years old. If Gasol pushes through something and goes down, his trade value plummets. Who knows for sure if he’ll be back next year? We could have another Howard situation at that point.

            Kobe is also dangerously close to the edge. Him not taking his sweet time could lead to yet ANOTHER issue. It’s not unreasonable to think the knee was a result of the body overcompensating for the Achilles, is it?

            Better to err on the side of caution this season. Accept (which is tough for competitors) that this is about the future, and not the pride of this season.

          • http://www.haveslot.com/ richard

            WE have been arguing with this in circles… I think more than enough has been said…. thanks for you views… but it is a losing mentality you want to seep in into the Lakers.. that I cannot accept.

          • Daryl Peek

            You can easily argue that higher draft pick does not always mean you’ll get a better future great. We have the perfect example in the purple and gold right now. Kobe Bean Bryant a 13th overall selection. That 96 draft was stacked just as this one is projected. Of all the great talent selected in that draft Kobe is the only true franchise changing player to see a dynasty manifest from his selection. Fisher (#24 the Lakers natural position draft pick that year) Ray Allen and Malik Rose (a second round pick) are the only other players from that draft to contribute to championships. Several of them from that draft went on to have great careers but like most high draft picks selected in the draft lottery via tanking most didn’t stay long term with the teams that drafted them.

            The Lakers have never selected higher than 10th with their own draft lottery pick and not since Jerry West (1960) have they selected a high draft pick of their own who became a franchise changing player. Magic was a pick they got via the Gail Goodrich trade to the NO Jazz. Worthy was a pick they got in a trade of Dan Ford to Cleveland. I’d rather see the team continue to be wise and trading players for draft picks VS. tanking to get them.

            The thing that stands out and infuriates most older Lakers fans like myself about this tanking mess is the fact that the Lakers have never drafted from a position of worst in hopes of going to first and in the cases when the team was at their worst only once did they get an all-time great with a high draft pick, again Jerry West.

            This organization is just not built to ever accept tanking. Call it arrogant or old school foolish given the major progressive thinking of these new times, if you may but the tradition of the Lakers brand is what most fans respect above all about the franchise. Dr. Buss transformed the legacy of the Lakers to an even higher level of what it was as the team could never shake the Celtic pride.

            We are not those Celtics that lost some of their elite luster in accepting tanking after the Bird era. Rick Fox puts it into perfect perspective on the difference between the Lakers and the new age Celtics. He and B. Shaw were both drafted by the Celtics at the end of the Bird era. Shaw actually played with Bird, Fox was drafted right after Bird retired but played with both McHale and Parrish.

            Fox often tells of the change he saw in the organization after McHale and Parrish moved on, and how the acceptance of losing cast a dark shadow over the then best franchise in all of basketball. After five years of sucking the Celtics opted to tank the 96-97 season in hopes of landing Tim Duncan. It was a desperate move likely prompted by the success West and the Lakers had in landing Kobe and Shaq the previous season coupled with the hype predraft hype Duncan commanded IMO. We all know how that worked out for the C’s. They ended up drafting Billups, a great players who went on to lead a team to a championship but not the Celtics. Again the tanking theme yielded a player that didn’t stay home long term, and on a big market team that was the overall best franchise in basketball up til that point. Fox couldn’t be happier in becoming a Laker in getting out of that losers culture in Boston as he calls it. Dig that? From Celtic pride first to worst after taking on the tanking theme. LOL Fox notes the aura of the Lakers franchise proud tradition as revitalizing his love for the game. This is what we risk losing in succumbing to tanking.

            The proud and mighty are not immune to the long term grasp of a loser mentality if you accept it on a so called short term basis. Again it’s just a game of chance I feel is not for the Lakers brand.

            I know you and many others have the best interest of the Lakers at heart, and I’m not proclaiming to be all knowing 100% right in this but we’ll just agree to disagree on this one.

            GO LAKERS

          • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

            I definitely won’t argue that the draft has busts in the top picks, and plenty of great players in the lows. I’m just arguing the odds here.

            I hate seeing the Lakers lose, as does every fan, but I know it’s for the best*

            *subject to a lot of chance

  • JB

    Word is Dantoni is hot over saric. A stretch 4 that plays NOOO D. I really hope they fire Dantoni after this season so that he can’t influence the draft pick.

  • JB

    If embiid AND parker don’t declare it will hurt the lakers chance of getting a star. It moves exum/smart/wiggins up 2 notches and they will go earlier.

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