Lakers Trade Radmanovic for Morrison and Brown

The Lakers have traded Vladimir Radmanovic for Adam Morrison and Shannon Brown.  This obviously is a salary dump move.  Radmanovic is due around $6.5 million this year and next and has a player option.  This potentially saves the Lakers $13 million.

I understand the essence of the deal.  However, I’m wondering if there is a center or pure shooter out there that would have been available for a similar deal.  Having said that, I think Adam Morrison can be developed into a triangle offense player ala Luke Walton.

Morrison was a prolific scorer when he was in college so fundamentally, he can play, at least on offense.  Maybe a change of scenery and offense can bring out the best in him.  Plus, he has a weird moustache.  Somebody with a weird something could be hiding some form of intellect.  You know, it’s like Phil Jackson.  The Zen Master is weird and yet his methods are effective.

I don’t know.  I guess it’s just wishful thinking. Read More

Lakers’ Radmanovic no longer on thin ice

By Mike Bresnahan, Los Angeles Times

Lost in the fine print of the Lakers’ three-game run was the effort by the guy once referred to as, well, lost.

Phil Jackson uncorked one of his more memorable quotes when he called Vladimir Radmanovic a “space cadet” last season, but the recent play of the 27-year-old forward has helped keep the Lakers orbiting above the rest of the Western Conference.

In the last three games, all victories for the short-handed Lakers, Radmanovic averaged 15.7 points, 6.3 rebounds and 56.3% shooting from three-point range (nine for 16).

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Lakers’ Radmanovic gets message

Elliott Teaford, The Sun

El SEGUNDO – Vladimir Radmanovic’s skills were never in question.

It was his commitment the Lakers wondered about.

Coach Phil Jackson said Saturday he asked Radmanovic last season to show the team he cares about playing the game the right way.

Actually, Jackson said he had the same conversation with Radmanovic three times.

They spoke at midseason, then again after Radmanovic injured his shoulder while snowboarding in Utah during the All-Star break and after the season ended.

“The whole process was hammered home to him in a certain way,” Jackson said when asked Saturday about their talks. “We want you to help us and we want you to do everything you can. We need you on the court to do it.”

Jackson’s message was received loud and clear.

Radmanovic has helped himself by playing a smarter game this season, emerging as a starting forward with something positive to give to the Lakers. He’s averaging modest totals of 7.5 points and 2.8 rebounds, but he’s not making as many mistakes.

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Lakers aren’t letting things slide

Team has been doing much better against losing teams this season, particularly in back-to-back situations.

By Mike Bresnahan, LA Times

he pattern presented itself over and over last season, a Groundhog Day that couldn’t be escaped by the Lakers once the injuries and ineffectiveness began to set in.

Win a few, lose a few. Beat San Antonio, but lose to Charlotte.

The injuries have continued this season, but the tendency to slide after success has not.

Case in point: After an impressive 130-124 victory Wednesday at Phoenix, the Lakers put away an undermanned Clippers team, 113-95, Saturday night at Staples Center.

“Last year, we’d win a couple and relax,” Lakers Coach Phil Jackson said. “This team has not given that sense of satisfaction with what they’ve accomplished. I think that’s been a real vital sign for them, that they’re still hungry and playing well.”

The Lakers’ main challenge this week might be to stay awake. Their next four games are against teams that wouldn’t make the playoffs today — Seattle, Miami and Portland twice.

They play tonight in Seattle, a back-to-back situation that would be cause for distress in recent seasons, but not so much anymore.

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Lakers coach Jackson gets surprise during media briefing

By Elliott Teaford, LA Daily News

Coach Phil Jackson had just finished heaping praise on Clippers center Chris Kaman when someone wondered how Kaman’s absence Saturday night at Staples Center might change things for the Lakers.

It took a moment for the information to register.

“He’s a shot-blocker,” Jackson said.

Pause.

“I didn’t know he wasn’t playing,” he added. “Thanks for the information.”

Pause.

“He’s an interior defender,” he continued. “He can give you a problem if you’re going to the basket. Last year, I think they were one of the leaders in the league in blocked shots with both he and (Elton) Brand. This year, he’s had the sole duty to control the lane. Offensively, it takes away a post-up opportunity for them.”

Kaman tweaked his back in Friday’s victory over the Utah Jazz and did not suit up against Pau Gasol and the Lakers. The Clippers have been without Brand for the entire season. He injured his Achilles’ tendon in August.

“Kaman is having a good year,” Jackson said before he learned Kaman wouldn’t play. “It looked like he struggled for a while recently, but he’s playing well now.”

Jackson on Friday chalked up Lamar Odom’s improved scoring, rebounding and playmaking to increased minutes, and it seemed at the time that he was merely joking.

Jackson touched on that theme again when asked Saturday about Odom’s rebounding.

“A lot of it really is about minutes,” Jackson said. “Big guys should get one every three to four minutes.”

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