The same Los Angeles Laker franchise that have collected their fair share of NBA Championships and Hall-of-Fame players was exposed this season. Another early exit in the second round of the NBA Playoffs revealed that this was franchise in decline and the days of championship glory appeared to be distant memories.
At season’s end it was clear that changes needed to be made in order to field a team that was worthy of wearing the same Laker jersey that was worn by some of the greatest basketball players to EVER play the game. Weighed down by big contracts by their two aging stars Kobe Bryant and Paul Gasol the odds of the front office being able to make any considerable offseason moves appeared to be very slim.
But like a lion waiting to pounce on his gazelle, the Lakers added 2-time MVP Steve Nash into the fold, which immediately made the Lakers a favorite to contend for yet another NBA Championship. Although the Lakers added another aging star (Steve Nash is 37) to the fold his addition will improve the Lakers offensive production by leaps and bounds.
Nash will be able to spread the floor which would make life much easier for Kobe Bryant. He will also open up the paint for the two 7 footers down low (Bynum/Howard and Gasol). Thanks to Mitch Kupchak and the Laker front office the future appears to be bright, and this sudden change in fortune was made possible by the $8.9 million dollar trade exception they received when the traded Lamar Odom for “nothing” to the Dallas Mavericks. Although the front office was heavily scrutinized by Kobe Bryant and pundits around the league for the Odom “giveaway” it is now evident that they had a plan in place all along.
The front office is officially off the hook and the focus now turn to Coach Mike Brown he has very little room for error. Although no one questions Mike Brown’s basketball IQ his inability to make in-game adjustment was exposed in the regular season. Andrew Bynum’s abysmal attempt to shoot a three and frequently playing outside of the offense indicate that Coach Brown is not respected by his own team and has lost control of the locker room.
Coach Mike Brown, you have officially been put on notice, due to the recent off-season moves if the Lakers fail to meet Lakers Showtime expectations he risk being fired before the All-Star break. Their will be several talented coaches like Mike D’Antoni salivating on the sideline waiting to step in and lead the Lakers to the promise land.
Expectations are high and anything less than a championship will simply not do. How will Coach Brown and the Los Angeles Lakers Respond? Stay tuned… I know I will – A. Denmark (follow me on twitter @eatdrnkslpsprtz)