Lakers News: Mitch Kupchak Dismisses Idea Of Throwing In The Towel Reviewed by Momizat on . There has been a notion of the possibility that the Lakers are considering tanking next season to purposefully increase their chances of getting into the NBA lo There has been a notion of the possibility that the Lakers are considering tanking next season to purposefully increase their chances of getting into the NBA lo Rating:
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Lakers News: Mitch Kupchak Dismisses Idea Of Throwing In The Towel

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Mitch KupchakThere has been a notion of the possibility that the Lakers are considering tanking next season to purposefully increase their chances of getting into the NBA lottery and obtaining a high draft pick. This notion has been speculated after the injury of the Lakers’ franchise player, Kobe Bryant, in which his return date is yet to be pinpointed. This notion got louder when Dwight Howard left for the Houston Rockets in free agency earlier this month.

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Tanking is unfamiliar territory for the sixteen-time champions, and today, Mitch Kupchak dismissed any notion that the Lakers are going to “throw in the towel” in the upcoming season. In a new interview with the Los Angeles Times‘ Mike Bresnahan, Kupchak reaffirmed the Lakers’ goal of winning, saying:

“You know that’s not our plan. Our plan was to bring back Dwight Howard and that would have sky-rocketed our payroll,” Kupchak said. “That’s never a plan here with our fan base, to throw in the towel before the season begins. We always try to win, and that’s what we’re going to do this year.

“We have challenges. There’s no doubt. We don’t know when Kobe’s coming back, and we don’t know what level he’s going to come back at, although we’re optimistic. Everything’s good with Steve [Nash].Pau [Gasol] should be fine. We’ve added some athleticism. We’re hopefully putting ourselves in position where we can compete in every game.”

The Lakers’ front office has done a solid job of signing free agents this offseason that can play crucial roles on the team, especially when you considered the financial limitations the team is facing this summer.

Although acquiring a high draft pick in 2014 is desirable, when the draft class is set to be very talented and sought after, Mitch Kupchak affirmed what the Lakers have built their culture and narrative around for decades: winning.


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About The Author

Elizabeth is a graduate from Arizona State University and has her master's from Duquesne University. She is currently an associate editor at Lakers Nation. To read more of Elizabeth's articles click here. You can also follow Elizabeth on Twitter @Gobibs

Number of Entries : 381
  • 3339

    the only move that would give fans the idea of throwing in the towel is keeping dantoni instead of hiring a better fit. I really don’t understand how the Lakers can keep this guy after last season.

    • lakers

      Although I dislike diantoni its unfair to put the blame all on the coach. Granted he’s horrible but he still deserves 1 more season at least. He never had a proper training camp and that’s really important and with all the injuries this season its hard to point the blame to diantoni. Give 1 season to him and if he still does horrible (I.E. 8th seed again ) then fire him

      • 3339

        why didn’t Mike Brown get another full season then? He actually won a playoff series in a lockout shortened season. Why does dantoni get more than Mike Brown?
        Dude the training camp thing is bullshit. dantoni doesn’t fit. a full training camp will just further infect the Lakers.
        I don’t want to see the Lakers waste another season when the biggest problem can be fixed now

        • richard

          Obviously, you did not take into account team chemistry into your argument… the team played well, winning 4 of 5 in the last 40 games with MDA coaching… you should think again about that comment of yours.

          • 3339

            Dude we are the Lakers. Winning 4 of 5 in the end is a joke. We should not have been in that situation. Dantoni had no plan. I can’t believe you’re bringing up team chemistry as a defense for dantoni. Pau hated him. Dwight hated him he treated earl clark like a slave and kobe wanted brian shaw from day 1. Dantoni should not be coaching the lakers

          • richard

            Yes, we are the lakers and this is a game is a team sports where 5 players should be on the floor executing something in unison.. and that execution was not there due to lack of training camp and the absence of players due to injuries. It’s difficult to have 2 people agree on one thing, how much more 5… your view of BB dynamics is that of a video game… THIS IS NOT VIDEO GAME! There are players tendencies to consider, personalities to mold, comaraderie to develop. Those kind of things, yet intangibles, are part and parcel of a team dynamic if you want to win and go places.

            PhilJax’s team usually takes 3 years to really click. don’t you think you should give the same to MDA as a coach?

            As Kobe said, “Chemistry is most important in BB”… I’ll take Kobe’s word any time over yours.

          • Jeremaine Prieto

            RIght on.

        • Lakers

          Hi, I’m the guy who made the comment above “lakers” ^^

          Lakers were expected to be a championship contender starting the 2012-2013 season with Mike Brown as head coach. He already HAD 1 whole season + a training camp. And yet they started with a horrible preseason going 0-8 and 1-4 in the real season which lead to him being fired. Granted he did win the first round of the playoff series… look at the guys who we had during this playoff while playing the spurs Lakers literally had no one, we even had to call Andrew Goubelock to be our starter that’s how bad in a position Lakers were maybe if it wasn’t for all the injuries it would’ve turned out better

          Also I don’t get what you mean by “further infect the Lakers” diantoni is a good offensive coach just a horrible defensive coach so with recent addition of assistant coach kurt rambis it could be better. (obviously Phil> diantoni any day)

          • 3339

            Dantoni has no idea what he’s doing. The type of basketball he wants to play doesn’t win rings. Other coaches have beaten him at his own game all t he time. His no defense mentality and flawed offense is what I’m talking about when I say further infect the lakers

          • Jeremaine Prieto

            Brown had a shortened season. Injuries did decimate us leading to lack of chemistry. But, it was all the uncertainty with Dwight that ultimately led to the Lakers’lack of identity. Now that he isn’t sticking with us, great riddance.

  • what?

    keep in mind the nba is now playing small ball meaning teams in the playoffs run more and spread the floor and shoot 3′s more. i say give him a chance to do his best this next season and then critique him. i say lakers need one more excellent 3 point shooter to fill the roster! so please kupchack/buss get an outstanding 3 pt shooter and defender. lakers need to play their cards right there are many available vets out there that can shoot and still available!

  • Laker J

    If you were not throwing in the towel, why did you not seek to get anything in return for Dwight? The (best) center in the league and you got nothing back for him. The position that the Lakers would not do a sign and trade was detrimental to the team…period.

    • Eddie Lazaro

      Not he is not the best Center in the league. I will take Noah’s game any night.

      • LuvMyUsa1

        Eddie Noah is a mediocre center at best , heck Omer Asik ate him up scoring 20 pt’s and grabbing 18 rebounds in that game they played in Chicago ! BTW Everyone including NBA executives believe that Howard is the best center in the League ! Your bias is clouding your judgment !

        • Eddie Lazaro

          That makes my argument more valid. With what Howard is making, I can get Asik + Noah together who play their best and gives me intensity every night. Other than being a defensive blocker, he never play consistent. Howard is a liability: on his free throws, on (losing ball) post-ups and his behavior on and of the court. I can not consider him a max and a lot less being a franchise. Andrew Bynum, if healthy and not acting childish is a much complete player in the middle than he does, though both are head case and inconsistent. He has to learn different moves to elevate his game before being considered the best Center. He was the best center available this past F/A though.

          • LuvMyUsa1

            Ed please just stop ! Now you’re trying to put Asik and Noah together to make one Howard ! Dude you’re digging yourself deeper in the hole you created ! Howard is the best center hands down ! Howard returned to Orlando playing in a hostile arena last season and scored 39 points , grabbed 16 rebounds , had 2 assists and 3 blocks ! Those are elite numbers for the center position ! BTW last season was considered a down year for him because he was returning from injury ! He will be healthy coming into this season so he should dominate !

          • ra

            Howard ‘was’ a great center, arguably was the best Center in basketball (at times), but Bynum not only played better on ‘both ends’, his play led to two Championships. And, if he had played in 2008 Finals, it would have been 3.

            Bynum’s post-up moves improved over the years. DH’s post-up moves have yet to develop. And that’s the ‘signature move’ of a great center (Kareem, Wilt, etc.).

            Now, it is clear as a bell that DH was the ‘most athletic’ center, maybe in years, decades. But you know, his level of play was a liability on his back. That level of athleticism can no longer be sustained the way it was in the past.

            DH is either over the hump, or a few years away from learning a ‘different’ style of playing, and doing it successfully. LeBron had a similar issue – LBJ’s mid-range and post-up play was ‘non-existent’ years ago. He had two moves – 1) drive to the basket, 2) 3-pointers. Now he has a bigger arsenal, but it took years to get there (and he’s arguably the ‘best player’ in basketball).

            DH has years to get to being a ‘great all-time center’, and he may get to a high level of play. But it’s also clear he didn’t want to do that in LA, which was a ‘huge’ surprise, because LA ‘cultivates’ centers, big-time centers, more than any team in the league. It is the ‘landing spot’ for aspiring ‘great centers’. So, it’s clear that DH doesn’t want that.

            In the meantime, the field is open for the ‘greatest center in the league’ in the upcoming year.

          • LuvMyUsa1

            Dude you’re worse than Ed ! Bynum missed an entire season last year because of bad knees ! BTW this has been an ongoing problem for him ! Why do you think Cleveland gave him an incentive based contract and it is very short ? It’s because they didn’t want to be on the hook ! Bynum ruined Collin’s coaching stint in Philadelphia ! Bynum is just like Odom in the sense that he showed great promise for a short time but injuries got the best of him !

    • Jeremaine Prieto

      Lakers have a winner’s mentality, every game counts, NO TANKING.

  • Jim213

    Could’ve fooled us given the lack of chemistry and experience that’s required to win games.

  • Jim213

    MJ Quote: “Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.”

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