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Lakers Players Trending Up And Down After Schedule Release Reviewed by Momizat on . The long awaited schedule release happened yesterday as Laker fans got to circle when Dwight Howard returns to Staples Center as well as Metta World Peace. With The long awaited schedule release happened yesterday as Laker fans got to circle when Dwight Howard returns to Staples Center as well as Metta World Peace. With Rating:
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Lakers Players Trending Up And Down After Schedule Release

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la-sp-lakers-nets-photos-20121120-007The long awaited schedule release happened yesterday as Laker fans got to circle when Dwight Howard returns to Staples Center as well as Metta World Peace.

With 29 nationally televised games, it’s clear everyone is interested in the Lakers, regardless if they’ll sink or succeed this season. At first glance, the schedule looks to be quite difficult at of the gate and the final stretch doesn’t look too inviting either.

Regardless, with all the change this off-season, several new Lakers will make returns to their former homes as we take a look at the Lakers who are trending up and down.

Trending Up: 

Pau Gasol

While his relationship with Mike D’Antoni wasn’t the greatest last season, it sounds like Pau is going to be featured more in the offense and give the Lakers a low-post threat they’ve been missing.

Jettisoned to the perimeter with Dwight Howard around, Pau should see most, if not all, of his looks inside as the new assistant coach Kurt Rambis acknowledged the need for an inside-out offense.

Nick Young

Young is already a fan favorite as he’s been spotted at the Drew League several times this summer as he looks to improve his game for the upcoming season.

While it looks like Kobe will be ready for opening night, Young will see a lot of time at the small forward position and if he comes to training camp in good shape, he could be vying for a starting position. The USC alum definitely has the support of the fan base and he should provide a lot of entertainment this season.

Marcus Landry

Anytime you get an invite to Lakers camp, things are going well. Landry impressed everyone during summer league as he was able to stretch the floor, a staple in D’Antoni’s system.

While he’s only on a partially guaranteed contract, Landry has a chance to make the roster, but also make the Lakers take another look at Lamar Odom if things don’t work out.

Trending Down: 

Lamar Odom

Once thought of a perfect fit with the Lakers, Odom hasn’t been on the teams radar after they signed Elias Harris and Landry to smaller contracts.

While he’s stated his desire to remain in Los Angeles and with the Clippers looking like they’ve moved on, Odom might not get the chance to play in the NBA this season.

Steve Nash

Nobody thought that trying out with Inter Milan was a good idea in the first place and after hearing that he couldn’t run at full speed, Nash doesn’t sound like he’s 100 percent.

After a dismal season last year, he’s vowed to give the Lakers what they paid for this season as he’ll need to produce or else it’ll be a long season in LA.

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About The Author

Ross is a staff writer with LakersNation. He is a graduate of the University of Arizona. He is a huge sports fan and will keep you up to date with the latest sports news. Follow Ross on Twitter at @Ross_Gasmer12.

Number of Entries : 256
  • Jim213

    IMO, given solid youth acquisitions, management has failed to put the best team on the floor given the cap too. Although, we expect the team to compete on a given night.

    • Daryl Peek

      Trending Down:

      Lamar Odom

      Once thought of a perfect fit with the Lakers, Odom hasn’t been on the teams radar after they signed Elias Harris and Landry to smaller contracts.

      While he’s stated his desire to remain in Los Angeles and with the Clippers looking like they’ve moved on, Odom might not get the chance to play in the NBA this season.

      Kevin Ding, Mike Trudell, Mason and Ireland, Romona Shelbourne, Dave McMenamin, ETC… all report this about LO as well. His personal life drama is the main deterrent.

      • Jim213

        LOL.. Daryl, I wasn’t talking about Lamar on this topic, though it’s starting to get old. It’ll be interesting to observe who manages to step up while Kobe comebacks.

        PS. Odom was brought up on the other topics given some of the latest rumors.

        • Daryl Peek

          Just being consistent on the rumor wire lol

          • Jim213

            Weird management hasn’t signed a 13th player. So either R Kelly gets brought in or another player who has height maybe signed soon?..Who? lol…

          • Daryl Peek

            Kelly is the 13th player. The 14th player is the conditional spot they gave to Landry with his partial guarantees/glorified camp invite. I think they’re waiting to see Kelly in action before they fully commit to him. Both Landry and Williams could easily out perform Kelly and take the 13th and 14th roster spots. There could even be an unnamed dark horse player or trade partner in the cross hairs out there.

            Training camp competition will sort the rest of this out. I like the suspense!

      • ra

        Would only trust Ireland with info. Others may have ties to ESPN, which tend to want to talk bad about the Lakers.

        So, you think LO’s personal life is interfering with his basketball capabilities? Or is it just that teams don’t want that type of publicity? (it didn’t look good for Dallas, through all the drama during the year he was there – he fits in better with the LA market).

        If he doesn’t come to LA, he should go to the Knicks and partner with MWP, his old childhood buddy from the day. (Queensbridge). Then the Kardashians can also have another season of LA / NY drama – Khloe takes on NY.

        • Daryl Peek

          His personal life has always led to performance problems on the court. It’s the main reason he’s been so sporadic over the years. His relationship with the FO is a bit of a problem also. Reports say he’s past it but really?

          It’s too much of a risk when you have younger hungrier players on the roster that can give the same production. The experience is definitely in LO’s corner but youth is the movement the team is on. Kobe, Nash, Gasol, Blake, Kaman, Farmar, Hill & Young are all experienced enough. At 22 Kelly is an experienced rookie, especially given his 4 years under coach K. at Duke. The current roster mix is nice. IMO

          • richard

            Kelly seems to have a very good understanding of what he can and cannot do… if he can get his body a little bit stronger and really work hard,- which usually the case with players that have seen how hard the Mamba works out… he can be a really good rotation player for MDA.

          • Daryl Peek

            Agreed. I look at the type of player Kelly is and how much he’s gonna learn from Kaman, Gasol, Kobe & Nash! The natural tendency is to compare Kelly’s game to Nowitzki. Kelly has very good handles for a 6’11″ player and is underrated as a back you down player in the post. This is where Gasol can help him immensely.

            The thing I’ll really be interested to see is if Kelly can pick up on that left foot fade-away jump shot both Nash and Kobe have mastered, that’s been so dangerous for Dirk. I often wonder who had it first, Dirk or Nash?

            This is why LO is somewhat of an after thought to me. It’s just time to move on… I’m ready to see the next crop of young Lakers begin their journey.

          • ra

            I know he suffered a tremendous loss with his son years back, and he almost left the NBA altogether. Yes, that is something that could have affected him negatively. But he had a stellar ’6th-man’ year two years back. And, he had plenty of TV drama during that time, so the ‘personal life’ argument doesn’t hold there.

            But also recall that more ‘recent’ issues may have had to do with recreational ‘items’ that could easily degrade one’s level of motivation and performance. Also, the sugar addiction and use of sugar products habitually in and around games can greatly affect someone (he did experience glucose drops in the middle of games).

            Heck, MWP had much more personal drama, and played very well (compared to previous year).

  • richard

    All too quite in lakerland these days… i feel something is brewing… a trade perhaps?

  • Daryl Peek

    “Trending Down:

    Steve Nash

    Nobody thought that trying out with Inter Milan was a good idea in the first place and after hearing that he couldn’t run at full speed, Nash doesn’t sound like he’s 100 percent.

    After a dismal season last year, he’s vowed to give the Lakers what they paid for this season as he’ll need to produce or else it’ll be a long season in LA.”

    HUGE concern! Gotta have Nash as close to 100% as possible given Kobe’s situation.

    • ra

      Not good. Offense runs through Steve Nash now. OK, 7 seconds (or less) was upped to 10 seconds. You think it could go up to 13 seconds?

      • Daryl Peek

        I don’t think we should typecast the offensive system we’ll see this season. D’Antoni learned a very important lesson last season and he knows roster make up demands flexibility in LA.

        • ra

          Yes, but D’Antoni runs a ‘specific’ type of offense, whether it’s 7, 10, or whatever seconds. He couldn’t do that last year, but it’s clearly the plan this year. Recall that when Shaq joined the Suns, D’Antoni called it 7 seconds + Shaq.

          Rambis is for defense. His knowledge of the Triangle is clearly not applicable here. Recall that the Lakers couldn’t even get the Princeton Offense going at the beginning of the year.

          D’Antoni == run & gun.

          So, Nash’s speed will ‘clearly’ be an important factor in this. His issues with speed may have nothing to do with injuries, but normal extended operation at a high level in the NBA. I.e., he could be slowing down, and that’s it.
          Otherwise …. what is your HUGE concern?

          • Zimmeredge

            well at least we recruited players on that perspective (running the floor, play fast, 4 players spread and one anchor down low). We only have two “real” centers (Sacre is young and is more a towel player and Hill is more a 4 because of his size).
            26 minutes for Gasol as a center, 20 minutes for Kaman and then garbage time with Sacre (if we are in a blow out). If it a “money time” situation then we go big inside with a “two tower” system with both Gasol and Kaman.
            More than anything else, we need young, fresh and athletic legs on the defensive side. Tyrus Thomas is the only one player available who’s able to defend the rim. He’s a good shot blocker, he can grab rebounds. the problem? he is injury prone…

          • Daryl Peek

            D’Antoni is not bound to 7 seconds or less. Pick-n-roll is more his bread & butter, and that offense has multiple variations in a half-court set.

            My main concern is the health of Nash. With Kobe possibly missing the beginning of the season Nash will be needed to run the offense. I kinda was hoping to see Nash work with Gasol and Kaman minus Kobe. A healthy Nash will increase the efficiency of them like he’s done for all big’s he’s played with. That would do wonders for Gasol’s confidence!

            Rambis was never truly a great defensive teacher. From 05-09 the Lakers D was horrible. The following years after his departure to Minny the defense got better. Rambis first came on board with Phil in 01. The first three-peat Lakeshow was a much better defensive group.

            The 99-00 championship team was actually a great defensive team! They held opponents to 92 points a game. I’m not saying Rambis is a bad assistant for defense but he’s not the guru most are making him out to be.

            Team chemistry is the key to this group having any type of success. My expectations are lowered and as I’ve stated before, I just want to see a group of Lakers that dig playing together. Wins will follow…

          • Zimmeredge

            sure Rambis he’s not Nate McMillian^^
            I don’t see both Gasol and Kaman on the floor. Only at the end of a tied game. But during the game: 4 spread and one inside. That’s basically D’antoni pnr. He can put a second big men but it will be J-Hill alongside Gasol (he spreads the floor at the elbow and can shoot effectively unlike Kaman) because hill is a good screener and he has a lot of energy rolling to the rim. So he will be used as a “Stoudemire-like” Pick>Roll>Dunk (or pass inside-out in the corner).

          • Daryl Peek

            Your speculating D’antoni will not be flexible with his roster. I can only go off his words, and he said he’d play both Kaman and Gasol together this coming season.

  • richard

    Are we there yet? I’m dieing for some basketball action…

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