What I Say Is Not a Revelation...

"...there's nobody on this planet who thinks we have a team that can contend for a title right now." - the KB on the Lakers not named Kwame.

I go away for one weekend with plans to write a post on whether we should be trading for Pau, Jermaine, Kidd, etc., blah blah blah, and come back to find that's the last thing on anyone's mind right now. Shit's been hitting the fan in Laker Land, and honestly, anything happening in the next couple weeks would not surprise me at this point. A couple of weeks ago I saw this Steven A clip and wrote it off as him trying to stir up drama:

Now after hearing Kobe's interview on KLAC verifying every one of Steven A's claims, I really don't know what to think anymore. He sounded hurt by the Caron trade, bitter about the inaction of management with Artest, Boozer, and Baron, and furious over the different message they sent Phil about the time frame of their rebuilding plans. Throw in the West situation, the Buss family catastrophe (what a rough couple days the Dr.'s having), and a Lakers "insider" blaming Kobe for the Shaq trading, and I can't help but fear that a trade demand is imminent if front office doesn't do some serious massaging and quick. The fact that no one has contacted him since exit meeting does not feel like a good sign. I've long been on the "There's no way he's getting traded anytime soon" train, but this latest Kobe media barrage with the 570 interview, the 710 interview, the KB24 post, and the Bucher article, I'm starting to feel like this is more than the typical pressuring front office to make a move. At this point if they want to keep him around, they might need to just hand the keys over to West if he's willing to take 'em. I know with his age, his loyalty to Mitch, his past with Phil, his son playing in West Virginia, that might be problematic, but desperate times and all that. I'm sure with the right number of zeros the Logo can find ways to get back to see his son's games.

I really hope this is just his way of forcing the Lakers to bring West back. While I'm not sure if he'd be the panacea Kobe is hoping, his track record is pretty impressive. Even looking at what he's done with Memphis, while this year was tankified, they won 4 more games than the Lakers last year and 11 more the year before that. Basically if that's what it takes to soothe Kobe (his list of complaints is long and valid), it's worth it in my view. If it sparks some life into management and the Lakers pull off some bold moves this summer, all the better. I'm not even asking he pull another rabbit out of his hat with a Vlade for Kobe type deal, how about just any deal that rids us of Vlade's snowboarding buddy.

Amid all the bombs Kobe dropped yesterday, one of the less-talked about nuggets from the interview was basically his singling out of Lamar and Luke as two guys who cared and gave it their all despite injuries. That seems about right as an outsider, although I'd probably add Farmar and Turiaf to the short list of guys in a Laker uniform with a pulse this post-season, but it's understandable why Kobe left them out considering their age and inability to contribute greatly. Ironically, this came out in his response claiming that he wasn't calling out his teammates with his public demands, just management, but it sure sounded to me like a subtle way of questioning the commitment of some of the other guys.

I can't even really get fully into the, "Can we possibly trade Kobe and for what?" debate just yet; basically I want to wait and see if his talk escalates from here or gets appeased quickly with West re-entering the fold. Basically it sounds like if does come to a head, Chicago is where he would want to be and the team with the most pieces to put something together. If we start hearing about Deng, Gordon, AND Thomas, I'll be interested.

Other takes on this shitstorm:
Forum Blue and Gold
Bandwagon L.A.
Sports at Random
True Hoop

No comments: