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Dwight Howard traded to the Los Angeles Lakers

Saturday, August 11th, 2012

You read it people, Dwight Howard got what he wanted.

For those people already billing the Miami Heat to re-peat in the 2012-13 NBA basketball season, you better think again because after Dwight Howard was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers, all of a sudden, the Heat’s trio don’t mean squat anymore.

It took four teams, 11 other players, five draft picks and countless rounds of talks over many months, but finally, the Magic decided the time was right to start over without Dwight Howard, the NBA’s best center and end a saga that has dogged the franchise for what seems like an eternity.

Howard is off to play alongside Kobe Bryant in Los Angeles, after a megadeal was worked out Thursday and completed Friday after the NBA reviewed and approved the particulars. As far as the other headliners involved, Andrew Bynum leaves the Lakers for Philadelphia and Andre Iguodala is heading to Denver. ”Are we taking a step back? Absolutely, we are,” Orlando Magic general manager Rob Hennigan said. ”But we’re taking a step back with a vision.”

The Los Angeles Lakers were set to introduce Howard later Friday…

What’s next for the Los Angeles Lakers now?

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012

The end of an era.

As the red and blue streamers dropped from the sky around the fallen Lakers faces, it felt like more than the end of a series in the 2012 NBA playoffs. With “Takin’ Care of Business” thumping and thousands rhythmically clapping around the staggering Lakers bodies, it felt like more than the end of a season. What happened here on a strange and sad Monday night felt like the end of an era.

Kobe Bryant’s window to win a sixth championship with the Los Angeles Lakers may have officially shut, and who knows whether he will want to stick around to spend his final years pressing his nose against the glass?

In the two seasons since they won the fifth championship of the Kobe Bryant era, the Lakers have lost their famed head coach, their celebrated locker room leader, and the powerful influence of their aging owner. Now they have been dragged to the curb of two consecutive postseasons like bags of old clothes, this time in a 106-90 loss to Oklahoma City that gave the Thunder a 4-1 series victory in the second round.

What now?

The Lakers flew home late Monday night with the raucous boos from the Chesapeake Energy Arena fans ringing in their ears while their future looked silent…

Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant hits 40

Monday, April 2nd, 2012

Like wine, Kobe just gets better and better over the years.

Kobe Bryant said he doesn’t fret over bad shooting nights, and he has had more than a few occasions to worry recently. His three-for-21 performance on Saturday against New Orleans, arguably his worst shooting night of the 2011-12 NBA basketball season, was his 15th sub-.500 shooting game in 16, but he didn’t lose any sleep over it.

So Kobe Bryant said he didn’t approach the Lakers’ game against Golden State on Sunday as a chance at redemption, or anything so trite as that. “That’s not going to happen,” he said. “I had an 81-point game. That’s just not going to happen tomorrow.”

How he motivates himself and truly feels is something he keeps well hidden. He had a 40-point game Sunday, not as spectacular as that 81-point effort but certainly enough to help lift the Los Angeles Lakers to a 120-112 victory over the stubborn Warriors at Staples Center.

Their performance fit their recent pattern in every way except his shooting.

After losing Andrew Bynum to a sprained left ankle late in the first quarter, the Lakers pulled away in the third but couldn’t close out the Warriors in the fourth. But the key difference for them Sunday was that Bryant hit 16 of 28 shots, including all three he took from three-point range…

Miami Heat visits the Los Angeles Lakers this Sunday

Sunday, March 4th, 2012

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And I reckon D-Wade will be in a whole lot of trouble after that hard foul he pulled on Kobe in the All-Star game.

Yes, your read it, a week after Dwyane Wade smacked Kobe Bryant in the nose and the rest of the NBA winced, the All-Star duo will share the court again Sunday afternoon at Staples Center as the 2011-12 NBA basketball season rages on.

If there are hard feelings, they apparently reside only with Bryant’s Los Angeles Lakers teammates. Wade apologized for the hard foul he committed last weekend in Orlando, and Bryant not only downplayed the incident but also praised his Miami Heat counterpart as being a “nicer guy than I am.”

Be that as it may, Dwyane Wade might not find the Lakers not wearing No. 24 to be so pleasant.

Lakers forward Matt Barnes hinted earlier in the week that payback was possible, that he and fellow brute Metta World Peace might get physical with the Miami Heat.

But center Andrew Bynum said Saturday that he would have to avoid any overt roughness because officials and the league office would be watching closely.

“I can’t do anything,” Bynum said. “If I do anything, they’re going to definitely hit me [with punishment]. It [stinks]. It’s not good. It’s just unfortunate and something we’ve got to deal with.”

Kobe Bryant did not practice Saturday or speak with reporters…

No rest for the Los Angeles Lakers in the first 3 games

Monday, December 26th, 2011

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As of this writing, the Lakers are locking horns with the Kings in Sacramento.

That’s just a day after Derrick Rose lifted the Chicago Bulls over this Lakers team to kickoff the 2011-12 NBA basketball season. Yeah, I can only imagine what kind of shape the Lakers will be in once they return home on Tuesday for the Jazz and with the way they lost to the Bulls in the season opener, it probably took a lot out of them.

The lockout cost the league its traditional 82-game schedule, so the Los Angeles Lakers must cram 66 games into 124 days, including a back-to-back-to-back situation to start the season.

After losing to Chicago, 88-87, on Sunday, the Lakers play in Sacramento on Monday before returning home Tuesday to play the Utah Jazz. They haven’t played three games in three days since the lockout-shortened season of 1999.

“I really don’t even remember much [of that] because I was like 19,” Kobe Bryant said. “I don’t even know if I was tired or not.”

Things could be worse for the Lakers. They played 50 games in 89 days in 1999, including three sets of back-to-back-to-backs. They have only one such run this season. The Clippers, by comparison, have two sets of them, including a rapid-fire trip in March at Indiana, Oklahoma City and New Orleans on consecutive days.

“It’s better to get them done now while we’re still fresh,” Bryant said…

Los Angeles Lakers – Boston Celtics Round 3

Thursday, February 10th, 2011

It’s round 3 at the TD Garden in Boston for the biggest rivalry in basketball.

Both teams have won on each other’s courts the last two times the Lakers and the Celtics played each other this 2011 NBA basketball season. Round 3 is back in Boston, who I wonder, will take this one?

To tell you honestly, it does not matter where the Los Angeles Lakers and the Boston Celtics play each other. That’s because the rivalry between the Lakers and Celtics, the two teams with the most NBA championships, is so intense and historic.

The Los Angeles Lakers won in Boston in the regular season last season, and they won Game 3 of the NBA Finals there in June too. The Celtics, on the other hand, defeated the Lakers, 109-96, at Staples Center on Jan. 30 and won Game 2 in the Finals in Los Angeles last year.

“If we were to play a game in the park against that team, it would be hard-core and [trash] talking,” Lamar Odom said after the Lakers’ practice Wednesday. “It’s always going to be intense when you respect a team. You don’t have to disrespect a team to want to kick their [butt]. You have that much respect for them, which intensifies the game.”

It took seven tough, intense games, but the Lakers finally…

Are the no.1 seed Los Angeles Lakers safe to get past the first round once the 2010 NBA Playoffs get here?

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

As expected the Western Conference is having a dogfight for playoff positioning.

With merely days before the 2010 NBA playoffs get here, the Dallas Mavericks, the Denver Nuggets, the Utah Jazz and the Phoenix Suns are all battling for control of the 2nd through 4th seeds, each of which come with home-court advantage in the first round.

The only team that knows which seed will they be at are the defending NBA world champions Los Angeles Lakers, taking the number one spot in the Western Conference for the third straight year.

The San Antonio Spurs, the Oklahoma City Thunder or the Portland Trail Blazers could end up as the no.8 seed to face the Lakers and unfortunately for Laker fans, all three teams can upset this Lakers team that has been struggling recently. As for now, San Antonio, Oklahoma and Portland will continue to fight for playoff positioning as the no.6, no.7 and no.8 seeds are still up for grabs.

So which of these three teams should the Lakers hope they won’t have to face in the first round? That’s easy. That team would definitely have to be the San Antonio Spurs.

The Spurs are currently in the seventh spot and has a tough final day schedule when they face the surging Dallas Mavericks. If they lose they would most likely end up in the eight spot and play Kobe Bryant and his Lakers.

Facing the Lakers in the first round is not an easy task for Greg Popovich and the rest of the Spurs team. But they are a veteran team composed of Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and the ever reliable Tim Duncan. They all know how to play in the playoffs. And with the addition of Richard Jefferson and Antonio McDyess, they can shock and beat the Lakers in the first round.

Hell, this Spurs team has been clicking at the right time…

Who will challenge the Los Angeles Lakers in the West?

Sunday, November 8th, 2009

seth-edward-oneal.jpgSportsCenter will be a little busy in a few days.

Because in case you didn’t know, the 2009 NBA basketball season is here. And since we already have the NFL season underway and the MLB playoffs starting to heat up, it’s certainly nice to be a sports fan at this time of the year.

And as far as the NBA season is concerned, the Los Angeles Lakers will try to defend Kobe’s first ever title without Shaq, hoping that last June’s successful run to the title will be the first of successive championship seasons. After all, teams coached by Phil Jackson are known to win titles by threes. But do they have enough this season to win it all again?

With the departure of Trevor Ariza, mercurial stalwart Ron Artest should quickly fill that hole. At this point of his career, Artest just wants to win a title so los_angeles_lakershopefully, he won’t be a distraction to this Lakers team like he once was with the last few teams that he played for.

Back to back titles would virtually be a wrap if the Lakers could get steadier production from big guys Andrew Bynum and Josh Powell. The team’s Jekyll and Hyde play is still a concern but as long as Kobe Bryant keeps this team together, they will still be in the position to win a world title.

If there’s one team that can challenge the Lakers this season, it would have to be the very team they played in the conference finals last season, the Denver Nuggets. After acquiring a true floor leader in Chauncey Billups, the Nuggets tied their franchise record of 54 regular season victories back in the 2008-09.

Chauncey Billups and Carmelo Anthony will continue to…

Seriously, what can Ron Artest add to a Los Angeles Lakers team that already won the NBA championship?

Thursday, July 9th, 2009

Replacing Trevor Ariza with Ron Artest is a downgrade, let’s just put that one out first.

Sure, Ron Artest is obviously the more talented player but why in the world did the Los Angeles Lakers let an energy guy like Trevor Ariza go and jam Artest up on their roster that just might mess up the chemistry these guys have been trying to establish the last couple of years?

That is the dilemma the Lakers are in heading to the brand new 2009 NBA basketball season. For a team that already won the NBA title, was getting a guy as volatile as Ron Artest the right way to go?

Ron Artest and Kobe BryantFor all of you who didn’t know, Ron Artest signed a mid-level exception to play for the Los Angeles Lakers, receiving $18 million over three years.

This is the same guy who mixed it up with Lakers star Kobe Bryant on multiple occasions during the 2009 NBA playoffs. Hell, they almost killed each other with elbows then and they’re suppose to be teammates now?

Sure, he will add extra toughness to a Lakers team trying to defend their championship. But if Artest can’t put his ego aside, they might as well kiss their bid for a re-peat goodbye.

Well, they’d have to anyway with Shaquille O’Neal now…

Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers, 2009 NBA Champions

Monday, June 15th, 2009

Kobe is the shit. (People still enamored with guys retired from the NBA years ago should repeat that to themselves a hundred more times…)

Any arguments that claim Kobe Bryant ain’t the best ever yet should now be over the moment he successfully led the Los Angeles Lakers to their 15th NBA championship. He has done it all now. He already has his MVP award including a brand new NBA Finals MVP trophy to go with the four NBA championship rings he won with the Lakers. And since he still has that freakish 81-point game to boot, yes, Kobe is the shit.

Kobe, the best closer in the game, finally won his fourth NBA championship ring, his first one as Tinseltown’s premiere star, when the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Orlando Magic, 99-86, in Game 5 to clinch the title in five games.

Los Angeles LakersThe Orlando Magic really had no chance against this Lakers team already salivating of getting the title back to L.A. as early as last year. You see, when the Boston Celtics ended their season back in Game 6 of the 2008 NBA Finals in Boston, the Lakers made sure they will make the most out of another trip to the NBA Finals. Well, it didn’t take them long for them to play for the title again and unfortunately for the Magic, they were just standing on the Lakers’ way, waiting to be roadkill.

There’s no question that Kobe Bryant has now done it all, establishing himself as the best baller not only of our generation but of all time. I mean, who else could’ve pulled off what this guy has done the last few years? He went from…



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