Thursday, July 30, 2009

Where He Belongs

Thank God the Lamar Odom situation got resolved. Both parties legitimately needed each other to keep the NBA world balanced. While the Lake Show could have made a minor tweak trade to try and replace LO if he decided to go elsewhere, there's pretty much no one who would have had a similar impact simply do to Odom being a four-year vet of the triangle offense and five-year vet of playing off of Kobe Bryant. That can't be highlighted enough. Playing with certain players is an art, and choosing to stay with the champs is a very enlightening move in showing that Lamar is one of those malleable players who can willingly fit with Kobe.

Artest, in my mind, is a beautiful addition to this roster and will pick up right where Ariza left off. While I loved the role our former wing played with his hustle, hard cuts, opportune 3 balls, and team orientation, I sincerely believe that Ron Ron can provide all of that along with a better jumper, a throw-in post game, and more intimidating all-around defensive presence. The only thing I think we lose is some speed on the wing and a defender who can stick to those pesky super-quick guards. But Ron is much better suited to clamp down on those equally troublesome and usually dominant small forwards with the all-around floor game like Carmelo Anthony, LeBron, Paul Pierce, and Tracy McGrady (if he's still alive). This naturally relegates Kobe to preferably defending the second offensive option, an assignment which promotes an even stronger presence on both ends of the floor by him. So it's win-win.

Strictly on Lamar's side of negotiations, though, I actually do think he could have outrageously thrived somewhere else. Unless there was another trade to compliment LO's signing (like the Boozer rumors), then I didn't really see Miami going anywhere to far. They would have been crazy fun to watch because Wade & him had a naturally chemistry in Wade's rookie season and they would have easily picked right back up five seasons later. But that team has so many holes in it at up to 3 different positions, so forget about them in the now nonexistent theoretical big picture. But who I really would have (begrudgingly) enjoyed watching him play for was the Trailblazers. Can you imagine a lineup of Andre Miller/Brandon Roy/Lamar Odom/Lamarcus Aldridge/Greg Oden? That's beastly. Then in turn they would have one of the upper tier benches in the entire league. That would have instantly propelled them up to the top of the Western Conference in a dead heat with the Lakers and newly molded Spurs & Mavericks.

But, again, it's not happening. So while I'll detail some other teams in later posts, the Lakers are where it's at this season. Lamar Odom decided to stay put and the championship trophy will decide the same next June. Our single casualty this offseason (unless and unexpected trade comes along) is Ariza. But with management re-upping every other player on the entire championship roster and adding the one character who will force the team from ever becoming complacent ... we have a dynasty on our hands. Thanks, Lamar. And I made this entire post without a retarded candy reference. I swear, I will strangle the next ESPN reporter or random person who thinks they're informed and tells a Skittles joke while talking about dude and giggles to themselves at their attempted hilarity. You're not clever and it wasn't a good joke anyway.

Great quote by Odom: "Riding off Kobe’s coattail ain’t bad. He’s got something special going around. I’ve got to be around. I’ve got to be one of the apostles. There was no way I was going to pass up playing with Kobe, Pau, Andrew and Ron-Ron."

... but do take my word for it.

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