Nick Young On Playing With Kobe: ‘You Catch Yourself Watching Him’ Reviewed by Momizat on . Newcomer Nick Young led the way for the Los Angeles Lakers against the Toronto Raptors on Sunday night with a team-high 19 points. Although Young was a welcome Newcomer Nick Young led the way for the Los Angeles Lakers against the Toronto Raptors on Sunday night with a team-high 19 points. Although Young was a welcome Rating: 0
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Nick Young On Playing With Kobe: ‘You Catch Yourself Watching Him’

Newcomer Nick Young led the way for the Los Angeles Lakers against the Toronto Raptors on Sunday night with a team-high 19 points. Although Young was a welcome offensive jolt off the bench along with Xavier Henry (17 points), the Lakers still fell short in Kobe Bryant’s season debut with the team.

After the loss to Toronto, Young spoke with Lakers Nation reporter Serena Winters about playing alongside Bryant and how different it can be:

“Sometimes you can catch yourself watching him while you’re out there on the floor…We can’t just defer to him every time.”

In his season debut, Bryant scored only nine points in a subpar performance against the team that he lit up for a career-high 81 points back in 2006.

As for the rest of the starters, no one scored in double figures with Pau Gasol coming the closest outside of Bryant. Gasol scored seven points in arguably one of his worst games of the season thus far. The three other starters didn’t do much better with Steve Blake finishing with three points and four assists while Robert Sacre chipped in with two points in only 10 minutes on the floor.

With Bryant returning and demanding the ball as much as he does, Young and Henry will have to learn how to play alongside the five-time NBA champion in order to coexist on the floor at the same time.

At this point in time, the two newcomers have been some of D’Antoni’s best offensive weapons either in the starting lineup or coming off the bench. Both players will go through an adjustment period along with the rest of the team in order to learn how to play with Bryant moving forward.
Lakers vs Raptors: Kobe Bryant, “I’m Still Not Sure Exactly What I Can Do,” Felt Weird (Part 1)

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  • Jim213

    No No No Swag, that’s what Tivo or filmed tape is for… everyone has play play as before as this is what Kobe probably expects not the other way around.

    • Al Haldie

      You cant do that if the ball is not moveing, say it as u see it SWAG.

      • Jim213

        The ball was moving with Farmar, Blake makes quick passes more so than rotate the ball around. Management gets the blame here for acquiring Nash rather acquiring a younger PG in the past.

      • Paytc

        It is best to just get used to having one of the all time best leaders taking the lead. Kobe will not take a back seat to any player(s) who are not more capable than he is as a leader. That is why D12 didn’t work out. He lacked and still lacks the ability to be a good team leader. You don’t rely on luck. Kobe has the highest basketball IQ,most skill,most heart,and the most championship experience.

        It’s a no brainer who should be running the show. I like Nick Young but give me a break. He chucks up some pretty bad shots. Kobe being on the floor to mentor,guide,and lead Nick Young will pay off big in the long run.And Kobe will make Nick Young a better player not the other way around.

    • Daryl Peek

      “everyone needs to play their usual way”

      To do this Kobe needs to adjust to playing with the fellas not the other way around. Just think about the build up to the return, Kobe the facilitator? It’s very unusual taking the ball out of your starting PG’s hands, especially one who’s top 10 in the league in assists.

      This was my fear, it’s not about Kobe being a ball stopper like some here say, it’s about the collective focus of the team.

      • Jim213

        “everyone needs to play their usual way”.

        This basically means for the team to not rely on Kobe foremost while continuing to play their game. But the coach gets the blame for giving him all those minutes. Hopefully, it’s not a live and die by Kobe thing otherwise it’s doubtful that the Lakers will get over the 500 hump given he’ll need time to get his shooting touch back.

        • Daryl Peek

          I didn’t see a team relying on Kobe. I saw a team wanting Kobe to succeed thus not playing their normal game. This is a good thing big picture and speaks to the all for one one for all mentality D’Antoni has groomed.

          IMO Kobe should not have PG duties when on the floor with Blake. I’m very curious as to why Blake was so pissed in the post game interview?

          • Jim213

            “I didn’t see a team relying on Kobe”. Disagree, he was given PG duties thus he’s the play facilitator that aside of trying to return from injury was expected to distribute to a different roster (chemistry lacked).

            I have to agree in limiting Kobe at the 1 given though believed it would help him to better adapt to the roster. But given that ball rotation has lacked since Farmar has been out I’m more for X getting more playtime at the 1 until Farmar returns given he’s a better ball handler..

          • Daryl Peek

            “But given that ball rotation has lacked since Farmar has been out” ?!?

            Prior to yesterday Blake was on a 10 assist per game tear. The ball moved just fine. When Blake was not on the floor the offense stagnated.

            The problem was he should not have been given PG duties this soon. The team tried to make Kobe comfortable, were caught up in the larger than life moment, and it is that, that caused the chemistry to be off. It had nothing to do with relying on Kobe.

          • Jim213

            Blake is a passer not a ball distributor. The ball is not facilitated as good as when Farmar is on the floor as this is one of the reasons why the bench has done what they’ve done this season.

            Blake is a good at passing the ball inside that includes finding ways and holes to get others good scoring opportunities. But with regards to ball rotation Farmar is a better though you’ll disagree check out the game recap highlights. The ball moves better with Farmar as opposed to more of an inside out game with Blake which leads to more assist.

          • Daryl Peek

            No it doesn’t. Farmar is much better at attacking the rim than Blake, no question about that. The better ball rotation comes from Farmar being on the court with Hill, Meeks, X and the bench mob. Gasol usually goes ISO mode and rarely rolls to the basket.

            Farmar is a change of pace PG. That’s the difference. They have done better because they are more of D’Antoni’s style of team. They embody his up tempo to the fullest. Blake can be that but the first unit usually has twin towers… Pau and Hill, Pau and Kaman, Pau and Sacre. The Second unit is all small ball energy with Williams or Johnson at PF. Of course they will seem to flow better at the optimal uptempo pace.

          • Jim213

            Of course Farmar is a better driver but with Kobe in the lineup now the ball will need to be facilitated more now. But you likely have Blake over Farmar but I disagree again (difference of opinion).

          • Daryl Peek

            We disagree (surprise) but MDA disagrees with you also as he has Blake over Farmar also. Passing is facilitating the way Blake runs the offense, I.E. PNR offense.

          • Jim213

            Disagree DARYL, stretching the floor is the preferred style for many teams which is why Farmar is better at the 1 given his ball rotation EXECUTION. Blake starts given he fits better with the starting vets rotation but the bread of butter of the team has been the BENCH MOB!

            This is the coach’s preferred style (small ball) as even Stu Lantz has brought up that the PG position has EVOLVED from past times being Magic#32 (great passer!) though clutch scorer when needed :O

          • Daryl Peek

            There’s no scenario outside of injury where D’Antoni would have Farmar starting over Blake and you know it. PNR is the bread and butter of his half court system as I said, better floor sppacing with shooter is a means to enable the PNR. They go hand in hand. Steve Nash was the offense in Phoenix and PNR was the vehicle he drove.

            The Bench has performed better in a wide open frenzied style based off heart and better defense. The bench is small ball as I also said.

            “the bread of butter of the team has been the BENCH MOB!” Blanket statement?!? You’re better than that mayne!

          • Jim213

            Again Daryl, talking about the coaches preferred style (2nd) which Farmar executes better not the 1st unit though players have been moved around to accommodate the rotation. Transitions on both sides of the floor suit Farmar more than Blake but Blake plays better with the vets on the roster though it’s a wait and see with Kobe.

            The bench mob has held the fort down but it’s one thing to keep on doing this night in and out given the inconsistency of vets in the starting rotation (not previous bench players). This won’t change until the positions are addressed in the starting position which implies overall consistency all around.

          • Joseph Apohen

            The only reason Blake is starting ahead of Farmar is because of who is in the first unit, Gasol, Sacre, or Hill who are not as mobile as the bench mob. Farmar’s style is not suited for this group and not because Blake is better than Farmar. The ball moves faster and rotation is better with Farmar because of the quickness of who teams with him. Wouldn’t it not be better if the bench mob becomes the first unit and the first unit becomes the bench mob? That should be interesting.

          • Daryl Peek

            If you’all truly believe that I got a bridge to sell you. Y’all have not been paying attention. Blake is a fav of MDA the same way he was Brown and even Jackson who brought him here. Blake’s is on the court no matter what. Nash in the line up Blake is on the court. Nash out Blake starts at PG. Again, there’s no scenario outside of injury where Farmar will get PT over Blake. This is the reality.

          • Dragon7s

            The only reason I can figure that Blake is favoured over Farmar is ‘intangibles’ because the advanced stats don’t support Blake being the better PG.
            I posted a long post with comparisons of the advanced stats but because I put a link to the nba stats site, my post is ‘in moderation’.
            It’s interesting to check out the actual ‘facts’ rather than simply relying on the eye test of who is better qualified to start at PG.
            Let’s hope my post is approved so you can see for yourself how much better Farmar is statistically than Blake.

            I also disagree with your assertion that Farmar is still learning the PnR while Blake is a master.
            The biggest difference between the two is that Farmar is more likely to shoot than Blake in that scenario which makes the PnR run by Farmar more difficult to defend for opposing teams.

            (Btw, one of the stats I posted was about TO% which shows that Farmar averages only 1 more TO/100 possessions than does Blake (13.7 versus 12.5) so your argument that Farmar is much more TO-prone doesn’t carry water.)

          • Daryl Peek

            Farmar was getting better at the turnover plight as the season wore on and that is what I look at as the learning curb. Statically Farmar should be better than Blake overall but the career difference is marginal at best. Farmar is more of a score first type of PG. That didn’t work with Kobe the first time and it will be interesting to see if it can now?

            I know the systems are completely different but remember a guy named Nick Van Exel? Yes Kobe was much younger back then but the pattern of history is all we have to go off. Blake is better suited to run with Kobe than Jordan is IMO. This is the same problem OKC had with Westbrook and Harden on the court at the same time. They coexisted at times but Harden came off the bench mainly due to the ball in hand attack the rim facilitator conflict of intent. This is also why you rarely saw Ginobli and Parker on the floor at the same time in the early Bone Spurs years in San Antonio. ;)

          • Dragon7s

            Good points in your comparisons but I would point to your correctly-stated learning curve. Farmar was very immature in his first go-round with the Lakers and he’s since very much matured as indicated by his willingness to accept the contract he did and leave millions of dollars on the table.
            He wants to play with Kobe and in MDA’s system.

            While historical comparisons can sometimes shed light on future predictions, that’s not always the case, especially when you have highly motivated players that are willing to work hard and sacrifice in order to achieve something greater.

          • Paytc

            Obviously this conversation is geared around personal likes and dislikes. Daryl personally likes Nash and Blake over Farmar for his own personal reasons. And Jim213 believes and likes Farmar over Nash and Blake for his personal reasons.

            Personally I agree with Jim213 that Farmar is the most gifted,capable,and athletic. Blake and Farmar both give a passionate effort. In a short term fix Blake is a good fill in. I would go with Farmar long term, and he was starting to emerge past Blake before the injury.

            Throwing out assist and padding stats in easy games is not what we are looking for. We have actually benefitted from rotating both Blake and Farmar because of the vast differences in tempo.

            I highly doubt we will bring both Blake and Farmar back next season. I have an opinion on which one will probably be gone but I’ll keep it to myself and support them both because they are presently both Lakers.

            Go Blake ! Go Farmar !

          • Daryl Peek

            I agree with all you said Paytc. It’s not so much I think Blake is the long term answer, I just think he’s the answer right now for this team as Farmar is being groomed. Time will tell if Farmar is ready to STEP UP over Blake.

            Blake is already proven in his versatility PG starter, SG starter or back up PG. My thing is Farmar has to clearly take that from Blake. Most just want to give it to him based of a very short sample size. I’m not moved that quickly.

          • Paytc

            Actually it is not really a short sample size because Farmar played on a championship Laker team in the past. I think Blake is having his best year so far as a Laker. I agree Farmar has to keep working hard to prove he is a shoe in to start and or run the floor. But starting games is just that. Number of minutes played is just as important as starting.

            The league actually gives out an award for the games best 6 man. You just have to get out there and bring what you have to offer consistently when given a chance.

            Blake is not as electrfying as Farmar. That causes Farmar to perhaps have an additional turnover. But Blake usually is not a scoring threat.He is a assist guy only.

            Farmar like Nash is a harder guy to defend and game plan for because they will make you pick your poison and keep you guessing. They are very capable scorers.

            As I said…. we should support them both because this year thus far I’ve been impressed with them both. I think the coach and front office will get it right based on each players health and availability.

            Go Blake ! Go Farmar !

          • Joseph Apohen

            Farmar was beginning to be even or better than Blake when he got hurt. For me this is like watching two good dancers, one who is mechanical and one who is natural and has the feel for music. The mechanical dancer has to think of his moves while the natural dancer feels the music and acts on it. To me Blake seems to think of what he is going to do while Farmar just go with his natural instinct. Both are playing well because of who the play with. Blake plays with the slower first unit of Gasol, Hill/Sucre, that is suited for his style while Farmar plays with the bench mob who are more athletic and quicker. If the choice eventually comes to who stays or who goes, I’ll have to go with Farmar to stay as he is younger and probably will cost less.

          • Jim213

            “He hinges much of his commentary on what may be in the future when it comes to players and their current performance”

            SMH, no no Daryl, this is retool time for the team but I’m not the one comparing players (unproven) to other stars. SMH

          • Daryl Peek

            “comparing players (unproven) to other stars.” ?

            Retool is something that will happen in the future as I’ve continued to state. Mitch and Jimmy have also. This season is all about today and cutting the fat from triangle ring chasing. Kobe is the emissary of the FO power transition.

            Going back and forth on what player needs to be added this season is futile given the aforementioned. This is the reason we differ in player assessments for the most part. Adding a player due to injury will be an emergency theme only. If Mitch can pull a trade that will save money and be of help to the team I’m sure that will happen.

          • Dragon7s

            I know you’re a big Blake fan and I agree that he has been playing great as of late. (Hey, he’s a favourite of mine also despite our past debate of Blake vs. Farmar. ;) )
            However, his miserable play in the Raptor game had very little to do with Kobe being on the floor.

            He just had a bad game…couldn’t hit shots nor could he find the open man on his dribble penetration and got stuck several times with nowhere to go.
            Now, whether that was the “Kobe’s Back!” atmosphere that contributed to that or not, I’m not sure but none of the starting five played well, even when Kobe wasn’t on the floor.

          • Daryl Peek

            Can’t say you’re wrong about the effect of cause but there’s something to be said about the chemistry of that games moment. I’m not Blaming Kobe more so than I’m blaming the grandeur of the return’s spectacle.

            All of the starter being out of sorts speaks volumes.

  • LakersHeatBeef

    So what is Nick Young saying Kobe Bryant is a ball stopper???What does he mean exactly with this quote?“Sometimes you can catch yourself watching him while you’re out there on the floor…We can’t just defer to him every time.”

    • Al Haldie

      I believe he is saying Kobe played to much two man BB he tried more passes to GASOL and slowed the game down to where everone stopped and watched KOBE AND PAU TRY TO PLAY TOGEATHER i hope we dont just end up with a two man game with the starters , the bench played their very good game but as u see they-play a 5 man game…

      • Dragon7s

        I think after last night, Kobe will realise that this isn’t the same Pau he won two championships with…we all see it and and so will Kobe.
        He’ll adjust accordingly, of that I have no doubt.

      • Paytc

        I would never compare Gasol to Kareem but working the ball into Kareem worked wonderfully. I’m sure Kobe wanted to get Gasol going because like me he’d prefer to roll into the playoffs with a confident Gasol who is in rhythm. When you want to go where Kobe does you take some championship experienced players with you.

        I’m pretty sure a 5 time champion knows better how to win a championship than a sideline buster or talentless critic,doubter,or hater. It will take some time, but the team is in much better hands now with the return of Kobe.

        • Joseph Apohen

          100% agree with your assessment.

    • Al Haldie

      And what do u mean did u not watch the game ?

    • Daryl Peek

      The euphoria of getting caught up in the return of an all encompassing warrior. This is what Young said and it’s exactly what happened.

      As fans Lakers Nation should not read into nor play the blame game here. This was pretty much unavoidable. The only thing I take issue with is the adjustment factor on the fly. The goal was Kobe the facilitator. One which I disagreed with before hand. Once we saw this was not working there should have been a win loss column adjustment, put the ball back in Blake’s hands to get the win. Portland came in very undermanned. There is no excuse for losing this game. That was very disappointing for me.

      Kobe is gonna be rusty, that’s to be expected. What the TEAM cannot do is fall back into the losses while learning/being in discovery mode. Hustle, heart and collective resolve is the equity that was forged as the identity of this team. That needs to continue…

      Kobe needs to slowly integrate into the collective. Once he gets his legs back we’ll see the Mamba of old who can effectively take over a game and not be an attraction leading to distraction. Again I’m not blaming Kobe. Last night was pretty much unavoidable.

      • Gregory Choa

        The problem last night as I saw it is that Kobe is not only very rusty (which is to be expected), but seems about 10-12 lbs overweight and two steps too slow out there. The 20+ turnovers killed the Lakers and I think Kobe accounted for almost a third of them.

        • Daryl Peek

          The identity was shaken in advanced. The ball should not have been taken out of Blake’s hands. This was my fear. Blake and everyone else naturally fell into the glean of the moment. I don’t blame Kobe for that. I do wish Kobe would be willing to take a back seat and work his way into the fold first instead of assuming a leadership role as facilitator. Team chemistry is of the most importance with this group. Last night was unavoidable but we cannot have that going forward…

          • LakersHeatBeef

            Yes it will be a work in progress,but i am betting on Kobe.Team ball is the concept MDA has instilled and Kobe will just have to play his game..Kobe is a old dog and remember the old saying?

            You can’t teach a old dog new tricks.

          • Daryl Peek

            It’s not a new trick for Kobe tho. Kobe has done this before, with D’Antoni at that. Kobe needs to take the Olympic team stance. He let others shine and run the show in that setting. Until he gets his Mamba bars back up this is how he should approach it to give the team full confidence in their roles. Taking over from the jump was a huge mistake, one that can be corrected.

          • LakersHeatBeef

            Well i understand where you are coming from.I actually understand MDA and his team ball concept since it worked in Phoenix.

            Now as fast as MDA wants his players to play the game,maybe just maybe a slower pace will be needed until Kobe gets in better basketball shape?

            Make no mistake Kobe is a Alpha Dog and he will never defer to anyone.Truth be told that’s the way the legendary Kobe is.I love Kobe for it.He doesn’t give a crap what anyone says or does.He remains who he has always been.

          • Daryl Peek

            Not wanting to neuter the Mamba. We need him too much. But he’s not the Mamba right now and as all great leaders know, you master the art of following before becoming a master at leading. Kobe is in a moment where its best for this team if he follows first. Being the Alpha he naturally is he will eventually re-assume his rightful place.

            Slowing down the pace? No way! Kobe needs to adjust not the team. You don’t slow the field in a marathon to make up for a slow runner. Those that do find themselves miles behind the field in the long run…

          • LakersHeatBeef

            Well maybe a coaching change will be made and let me tell you why before you get all upset or whatever.Kobe is making $30 million dollars this season,next 2 season $48.5 million dollars.

            And their are 78 million reasons the Lakers will keep Kobe Bryant over Mike D’Antoni.Love or Hate it Kobe is the most important member of the Lakers currently.And a old man by the name of Phil Jackson runs a slow system that fits Kobe and Pau to a perfect triangle.

            I want Mike D’Antoni to stay but bro he is 10-10 so whatever is clever i am not upset either way.He can stay and learn some new coaching patterns to focus on his slower older high paid stars or he can run into conflict.It’s too early in the process to see where this is going to end up.Kobe is a 5 time champion,mad respect.

            But The Buss Family and Mitch Kupchak will pick Kobe Bean Bryant over Mike D’Antoni if it ever came down to it IMO.Otherwise this is a moot point since adjustment will be made exactly as i said the pace will slow down just you watch it starts tomorrow night and will continue on until Kobe gets in game shape.

            Even when Kobe is in game shape it will still slow down or else a new coach will be named.Lakers cater to Kobe it’s obvious did you not watch his fantasy special player introduction last night?Also factor in Kobe is the highest paid player in the NBA,it’s obvious Kobe runs the show on the court.

          • Daryl Peek

            Why did you go there with Kobe VS. MDA in a power struggle?

            Coaches coach and players play. Kobe is too far into this to be in another 2004 Phil Jackson beef. This is not what its about. Kobe needs to let MDA run this the same way he did with Phil. If 14 others players are buying into the system, why would Kobe come back and demand change when the path was showing signs of working? This would be selfishness to the 100th power!

            This team is constructed to run at a faster pace. Changing that will only lead to what we saw last season. There’s no way things will magically turn into 28-12 with this group that was custom fit to D’Antoni’s coaching style. It’s crazy to suggest coaching change given he was given the tools to succeed. That sets the next man up for failure.

            Everyone knows Kobe is the main attraction draw for the Lakers. But that has nothing to do with what’s going on, on the court presently. Wins are all that matters once you start competing. If Kobe gets a ring riding the youth movement he will not be mad at that. This is not a Mamba absolute injection. It’s a Kobe reinsertion. His is the adjustment. As I said, once he get his chops back up he will run the show. Anything other than that at this early stage is Lakers failure on the court the way I see it, a hole the team will not dig its way out of…

          • Dragon7s

            There’s no indication from Kobe, or anyone else, that Kobe has a problem with MDA’s coaching style.
            In fact, Kobe endorsed MDA’s hiring (despite that little spat last season when Kobe basically told Gasol to ignore the coach and play his own style).

          • Daryl Peek

            Exactly. Both Shaq and Kobe veered from the construct of the triangle often times… “Sometimes I put a little of my own touch on it and sometimes Kobe did his. We put a little of our own spin on it and made it work.” –Shaq

          • Dragon7s

            Well said Daryl and I agree that Kobe needs to lay back (not slow down) a bit and get a feel for his new teammates.
            When starting a new job as a manager/supervisor/leader, the first thing you need to do is assess the team and talent you have before you simply jump in and start making adjustments. If you don’t, you’re likely to miss how much talent you have and not allow your team to perform to it’s true potential.
            This applies just as much in business as it does in sports.

          • Joseph Apohen

            The team played well when X was leading the team. Shots were made and he was making his shots too which enabled the Lakers to cut the deficit. The reason the Lakers lost was not only because of Kobe’s 8 turnover but because no one could stop Johnson. Where was Kurt Rambis? Isn’t he the defensive coach? There was no adjustment made in the second half to correct the first half problem. Going back to X who was hot I always believed to let the player with the hot hand play until he tires. I know this is contrary to NBA coaches philosophy. That’s why none of us are coaching.

          • Daryl Peek

            I assessed no player blame in this game simply because it was sacrificed for the return. Unfortunately the moment was bigger than the game. I hate that but it is what it was.

            I really disagree with Kobe taking the ball out of Blake’s hands. Again not blaming Kobe. I just think he should roll with the flow til he gets his legs back.

          • Dragon7s

            I have to disagree with your first line, I think there was plenty of player blame, especially with the starters. With Amir going off like he was, Gasol should have focused on defense rather than taking so many shots on offense. When you’re clanking as many shots as he was, it’s time to look for the hot hand and concentrate on D. He’s too smart to be making such poor decisions.

            On X in the 4th, I don’t think MDA had a choice but to put Kobe back in but instead of taking X out, Nick should have been the one benched, especially after that ridiculous 360 layup attempt. (Yeah it was good for a laugh and lit up the twitterverse to no end but as a coach, you have to pull a player when he makes a boneheaded play like that.)

          • Daryl Peek

            The thing I think you’re missing brah is the dismissal of all previous team chemistry equity due to the return spectacle of that night. Kobe’s return was bigger than the team that night. Everyone was caught up in it unfortunately. The build up was too much for them to overcome in that game and Kobe was caught in the midst also.

            The second unit shook it off better than the starters who were on the court with Kobe but it was preordained Kobe would command full attention that night.

            My hope is the team will get back to business tonight.

          • Dragon7s

            I didn’t miss that point at all frankly, being a long-time Laker fan, I was of the group that expected Kobe to exceed the doomsayers expectations when in reality I should have known better.

            You’re exactly right when you say that it was the moment that impacted the players effectiveness more than Kobe actually on the court.

            Still, it’s curious that the bench players seemed to be less affected by the ‘moment’ than the starters.
            You would think the Vets would have handled it better and the bench (young) players would have been the ones in awe and played poorly because of it.

          • Daryl Peek

            Inexperience often is too green to realize the enormity of said moments.

          • Dragon7s

            Let’s hope you’re right because there are many more ‘said moments’ coming up in the next few weeks, starting Friday against OKC (and no, I’m not looking past the Suns game tonight…just making an observation about ‘said moments’).

          • Daryl Peek

            Agreed. OKC is a huge test.

          • Dragon7s

            I think you hit the nail on the head with your Johnson assessment. In the Kings game, the reason they won was because they were able to take Cousins out of the game, and Amir is no Cousins. Why no defensive adjustment was made baffled me at the time.

        • LakersHeatBeef

          Agreed Kobe looked bigger,but he can use that to his advantage and become more of a post up player IMO.Also he already used all that extra weight to grab all those rebounds.He also punked a Raptor for the ball and stripped it right out for a steal.Kobe is looking much bigger up top he must of been in the weight room lifting,also eating a lot.

          • Daryl Peek

            The only problem with your premise is the slowing down of the team process. This team functions on an up tempo pace. The defense and offense feeds off a frenzied rate of play. Kobe will eventually be the buffer in lows as that style cannot me maintained for 48 minutes as we’ve all seen. The problem is maintaining that balance and not allowing the dominant force that Kobe’s will is to usurp the current theme of the team.

          • LakersHeatBeef

            Kobe is a 18 year veteran and he is old enough and smart enough to make this work out.Kobe is like a coach on the floor since he has been through so many battles and wars on the basketball court.

            Kobe is a focused individual he understands what needs to be done.Now if physically he is not able to be dominant anymore then that’s uncharted territory and i have no answer for that.

            But if he is healthy and in shape he is able to do what’s needed to be a top tier player in the NBA and also help his team win to reach the Playoffs and become contenders eventually Champions.

      • LakersHeatBeef

        Well said bro.I just hope guys like Nick Young give Kobe a chance to prove himself before going to the media with some harsh words.In this case i totally understand where Nick is coming from but it will take them all a good amount of time to learn how to play with a recovering from Achilles Tendon surgery Kobe.

        Also yes i agree Kobe is not a point guard he is damn shooting guard and probably the best ever other than Jordan.

        So it’s the Lakers right now who have to make this work out.Because let me tell you something they play Phoenix tomorrow and Suns have two top PG starting Bledsoe and Dragic this is a huge issue the Lakers will face tomorrow night.Lakers need to make the playoffs can’t fall back too much IMO.

        Actually the division is still up for grabs with the Clippers floundering lately.Lakers can compete for a playoffs spot and be a contender,it will take team work and support from every teammate and coach.MDA has his hands full with this situation.It will be fine.Kobe will knock that rust right out tbh.

    • Lakers Fan

      This is exactly why I said Kobe shouldn’t be the facilitator for this team. Alot of people kept saying “Kobe can facilitate until Nash gets back” I disagreed with this philosphy before he even said he would play Sunday. We need another point guard. If we are going to allow Kobe to be facilitator this will disrupt the rhythm of the team. We through too much pressure on him for it being his first game back. And that is exactly what I said D’Antoni would do.


    Swaggy P, you attempted a 720 reverse layup. You have no say in this matter.

    • Sam Craig

      Looked up his highlights and he has somehow made that shot before lol.

  • ra

    The only ‘questionable’ coaching move last night was taking out X-factor, and leaving in Kobe. I think the ‘coaching’ move was to try to see if Kobe could ‘finish’, since he’s a traditional closer.

    Back to Swag-P, it did look like the comment was ‘partly’ honoring Kobe – in fact, in some way being a ‘spectator’ watching the future greatest player in history play, is a treat for anyone. To see that player on your team, in a game, must be a ‘real treat’ for Swag. So, while they’re standing there waiting to see what Kobe will do, they stop ‘playing their sets’. For now, they (the rest of the team) should continue moving without the ball, some shooting to the paint to get a rebound (if Kobe misses), or securing a ‘good position’ so Kobe can pass to them.

    Now that D’Antoni has seen how Kobe plays in a real game, he should adjust his playbook.

    It will take a while (if ever) for Kobe to just be a ‘spot up shooter’. I’m sure he’ll be able to do that, but it’s not Kobe’s game. He’s a crafty player, who uses his basketball skill to ‘make his own plays’. He’s usually not on the receiving end of the playmaking.

    So, the rest of the team should be ready to handle this. Once they learn to play ‘with’ Kobe, they can step up a level.

  • Alvon Woods

    And “THAT’S” the fucking problem!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Players standing around watching Kobe…… The ball Stops rotating!!

    • Paytc

      They should just ask him for his autograph since their so close to him and standing there in awe :-) Or perhaps they should play some defense grab some rebounds and contribute. There is a 24 second clock so the ball has to be shot at some point. And if you know how to ball you don’t sit around doing nothing and/or making excuses. No, you leave that for the talentless critics,doubters,and haters.

      Go kobe ! Go Lakers !

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