Mitch Kupchak has stressed patience in regards to the rebuild of the Los Angeles Lakers. Kobe Bryant is not the most patient person in the world.
While the two have the same goal in mind of winning championships, they differ in the route to get there.
Bryant wants the team to act immediately and make major changes this summer and with good reason. Bryant’s recent two year extension is expected to be his last contract and he wants a championship.
Kupchak, obviously, has to look out for the long term future of this franchise and does not want to make any moves for the sake of adding players.
There have been cases of teams making a number of moves in order to improve immediately. In the cases of the Brooklyn Nets and the New Orleans Pelicans, it hasn’t been great.
With that being said, we asked our panel of experts, will Kobe Bryant calling out the front office be beneficial in the long run for the Lakers? This is what they had to say:
Matt Moreno (@MMoreno1015): I don’t think you can really say Kobe calling out the front office will help the Lakers cause moving forward, but I don’t necessarily believe it will hurt them either. That being said, whether or not the organization will listen to Kobe is another story.
Mitch Kupchak has stated they aren’t going to sign or trade for a player or players just for the sake of acquiring them. Unfortunately for Kobe, that could mean he needs to be patient and wait for the summer of 2015.
For now, perhaps the two parties will find common ground in the firing of Mike D’Antoni and re-signing of Pau Gasol, whom Kobe has defended countless times. Aside from that, the Lakers are in a wait-and-see position with several of the notable 2014 free agents restricted or owning player options.
What I am interested in watching is how this progresses. Kobe also mentioned he wouldn’t understand if Phil Jackson wasn’t brought in for a second time. Low and behold Jackson is with the New York Knicks now.
Will this lead to Kobe speaking out again? Will he express more displeasure rather than simply pleading with the front office for change? There are a lot of elements at play here and the situation could get volatile.
Ryan Ward (@Lakers_Examiner): After being ruled out for the rest of the season, Kobe Bryant made it clear that he wants changes in the off-season in order for the Lakers to become a contender next season.
Obviously, the Lakers turning things around over the course of the summer doesn’t seem likely. The team has no trade assets outside of a high draft pick and despite considerable cap space, there are no real game-changers set to become free agents.
There’s an outside chance that Carmelo Anthony bolts New York in favor of Los Angeles, but anything can happen now that Phil Jackson is calling the shots for the Knicks.
Needless to say, chances are slim that the Lakers immediately build a title contender this summer. The current situation for the team doesn’t bode well for Kobe’s plea for another shot at winning a title next season.
So unless Mitch Kupchak can pull off another miracle over the off-season, Kobe’s comment seems to have hurt the Lakers rather than help them. It’s hard to blame the five-time NBA champion for wanting to play for a contender, but it may not be a realistic request at this point in time.
Ramneet Singh (@Ramneet24): Kobe Bryant has no problem speaking his mind and his latest rant focused on the Lakers’ front office and its goals heading into this summer.
Despite popular belief, Los Angeles will most likely not make major changes to the roster this summer. Rather, most of the improvements will likely come in the summers of 2015 and 2016.
The chances of signing either LeBron James, Dwyane Wade or even Carmelo Anthony are fairly slim, but the Lakers are a viable option for free agents like Kevin Love, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and Kyrie Irving in the upcoming summers.
Bryant would like to see the Lakers turn into championship contenders before the 2014-15 season, but without a blockbuster trade, that will likely not happen. Everyone knows that keeping Kobe on the sidelines is a tough thing to do, but keeping him away from the Finals may be even tougher.
For a player that has won five championships in his career, seeing his team bound for the lottery is not an appealing sight. However, Bryant needs to have a little more patience as the front office has it eyes on the summers of 2015 and 2016 to turn the franchise back into a perennial contender.
Kobe Bryant On Change THIS Summer, Jim and Jeanie Buss, Coaching Staff