Sprung: How the Lakers are surviving without Kobe and Nash

SteveBlakeNashSH1

BROOKLYN – How many NBA teams could survive the loss of their starting backcourt for nearly a quarter of the season? How many NBA teams could survive that loss when those two players are future Hall of Famers like Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash? Through 17 games, you can count the upstart Los Angeles Lakers among those teams. Thanks to an unlikely effective backcourt rotation quartet of Steve Blake, Jodie Meeks, Jordan Farmar and Nick Young, the Lakers are 9-8 and

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Scotto: Kobe Bryant and Lakers Diagram Newest Championship Blueprint

Kobe

Kobe Bryant deserved every penny, if not more, of his two-year, $48.5 million contract extension. And I’ll say this: Bryant doesn’t deserve to be criticized as selfish for the amount of money he will make, and any subsequent cap space the Lakers lose as a result. Two of Bryant’s teammates, Chris Kaman and Xavier Henry, strongly agree. “I personally think he deserved more,” Kaman told SheridanHoops. “I know the only exception with that comment is that it can be hard for teams to

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Sheridan: Let’s Try to Trade Waiters, Shumpert, Turner and Deng

fairtrade

Trades happen. And when they happen, good things can follow. Need proof? How about Marcin Gortat’s 11-for-12 shooting performance Wednesday night? Granted, it came against the woeful Milwaukee Bucks. But Gortat is 17-for-20 in his last two games, and the Washington Wizards – who dealt the injured Emeka Okafor for him prior to the season – appear to be headed to the playoffs as they float near .500 in the woeful Eastern Conference – which has two, count ‘em, two! – teams

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Schayes: Home (Team) for the Holidays

dannyschayes

Happy Thanksgiving from the Marriott. As the marketers get more and more influence over the business that is the NBA, there are more and more changes that benefit the fans and the networks. They don’t benefit the players or their families very much … but that isn’t much of an issue. Lets face it. For most teams, it is getting harder and harder to find time to yourselves on TV. The NBA used to start training camp in the middle of September and

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Bernucca: With fundamentals, Spurs making NBA look like AAU

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We are all familiar with the Spurs and their uncanny efficiency. Are you familiar with AAU basketball?  I have coached it at the high school level for the last three years. And one thing I have learned is that with just four hours of weekly practice time followed by four games every weekend, if you don’t have definitive, well-drilled schemes on both offense and defense, you have no chance to compete. However, if you have a group that is committed to a

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Hubbard: Thunder still making some noise

thunder mascot

In Oklahoma City, the source of civic pride is never in doubt. Trying to walk or drive through the streets without seeing a Thunder sign or flag or banner is like trying to stand in Times Square without seeing a tourist. In fact, if you didn’t know any better, you would swear the name of the place is “Thunder” city rather than “Oklahoma City.” On Thursday night, NBA royalty even appeared at courtside to take in a Thunder game. Beyoncè visited the

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Scotto: Time to Panic for Knicks?

woodson

Coming into this season, I had the New York Knicks taking a step backward in my Sheridan Hoops preview column. But not this far back. New York is tied for the second-worst record in the Eastern Conference with a 3-8 mark and J.R. Smith, arguably the team’s second best player, is in crisis mode. “They say it’s too early to panic,” Smith said after Wednesday’s hard-fought overtime loss to Indiana, the team’s sixth straight home setback. “Me personally, I panic. I don’t

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Knicks fans should recognize a real superstar: Indiana’s Paul George

PaulGeorgeSH1

New York sports fans are very protectively delusional with players they consider stars or superstars. Just look at Mark Sanchez. Or 2013 Derek Jeter. The same thing seems to be happening with Carmelo Anthony, who New Yorkers remarkably revere as a megastar. In reality, Anthony is only average defensively and, so far this season, inefficient offensively. As we’ve seen throughout this season, Melo is certainly no Paul George. Just consider this sequence over the last five minutes and nine seconds of Wednesday

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