After losing to the Atlanta Hawks, the Los Angeles Lakers played against the Memphis Grizzlies in what was their last game of their four game road trip. Fortunately, the game ended with the Lakers coming out on top 96-82. With the win the Lakers finished their road trip with two wins and two losses.
Both Pau Gasol and Kobe Bryant played a great game to help the Lakers get the win. Gasol played like an all-star finishing with 21 points, 9 rebounds and 3 blocks. Bryant also recorded 21 points and had 4 assists as well. Off the bench, Nick Young led the way with 18 points and 3 rebounds.
The Lakers caught a break with the Grizzlies being without the services of both Marc Gasol and Mike Conley. Memphis led the game in the fourth quarter by three points but the Lakers were able to go on a big run and escape the game with the win.
There was a scary moment in the game when Bryant went down in the third quarter. Everything seemed to be okay after the game with Bryant telling reporters, “I just twisted my knee a little bit,” but everything would be fine. The Lakers will be back in action again on Friday and will be taking on the Minnesota Timberwolves at home.
(Getty Images/Jesse D. Garrabrant)
By Kevin R. Linares
The Los Angeles Lakers have agreed to bring back point guard Jordan Farmar on a one year deal using a veterans minimum contract. Farmar has been playing overseas with Anadolu Efes a team in the Turkish Basketball League. The Lakers will have to negotiate a buyout with the Turkish team before having Farmar play for them.
Farmar played his college basketball at UCLA before being drafted by the Lakers with the 26th overall pick in the 2006 NBA draft. He played four years with the Lakers as a back up point guard and won two championships with the team before signing a three year contract with the New Jersey Nets, now known as the Brooklyn Nets. The former Bruin was traded to the Atlanta Hawks before deciding to play overseas when the NBA lockout was taking place.
In his career Farmar has averaged 7.7 points and 2.8 assists. With the Lakers agreeing to bring the former Laker back it is unlikely that they bring back point guard Darius Morris, who Mitch Kupchak said they had invited to play for their summer league team.
There have also been talks that the team is looking at former Lakers Lamar Odom and Sasha Vujacic. Although Odom’s play has dropped he would be a great addition for the Lakers because of his ability to play multiple positions especially with there being a possibility that the Lakers will look to amnesty Metta World Peace. There was a report that the Lakers did agree to amnesty World Peace but a final decision has not been released by the team. The last day for the Lakers to use the amnesty clause is on July 16.
By Kevin R. Linares
The Los Angeles Lakers lost some size when Dwight Howard decided to sign with the Houston Rockets and have found someone to replace some of that size for the 2013-2014 season. The Lakers have agreed to sign center Chris Kaman on a one year deal using their mini midlevel exception. Last year Kaman played for the Dallas Mavericks where he averaged 10.5 points and 5.6 rebounds per game.
The 31 year old center was being looked at by several teams that include the Atlanta Hawks, Sacramento Kings and the New York Knicks before signing with the Lakers. With this signing the Lakers have the option to still look to use Pau at the center in the starting line up, bringing in Kaman as a back up center or having him in the starting line up along side Gasol. Prior to playing with the Mavericks Kaman had played with the Clippers for his first 8 seasons in the NBA and the New Orlean Hornets, now known as the Pelicans…
It has been the Clippers who have been signing former Laker players that include Matt Barnes, Lamar Odom, Caron Butler, Ronny Turiaf and there are now reports that the hometown rivals are having discussions with Antawn Jamison who played for the Lakers this past season. Other NBA free agents that the Lakers are reportedly looking at include Anthony Morrow, Nick Young, Elton Brand, Sasha Vujacic and Lamar Odom. Elton Brand also played for the Mavericks last season along side Kaman. Both Kaman and Brand played together with the Clippers as well. Odom and Vujacic won championships with the Lakers before they were both traded. Like Kaman and Brand, Odom played with the clippers earlier in his career including last season and it would be interesting to see him along side Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol for one last ride.
By Kevin R. Linares
The Houston Rockets were believed to be the front runners all along in the convincing Dwight Howard that they are the best choice for him and it appears they are indeed. After it being reported by Sam Amick from USA Today that Howard had chosen to sign with the Houston Rockets, Dan Fegan, Howard’s agent, said that there was no decision made yet. There were also reports about Howard taking a plane to meet with Lakers’ general manager Mitch Kupchak and he was still split between the Rockets and the Lakers but Howard has now told Kupchak that he would not be returning to the Lakers.
“We have been informed of Dwight’s decision to not return to the Lakers.” Kupchak said in a statement confirming that Dwight would indeed join the Rockets, his third team in three years. What does this mean for the Lakers? They will have to look forward to 2014 when they will have plenty of cap space to find one of the many free agents. They will have to rely on Pau Gasol to play center again, Kobe Bryant to recover continuing to play at a high level and have the rest of the team to do their part in competing in the 2013-2014 season.
Although it will be an old team and without Howard, the Lakers still have enough to compete for playoff position. There will be some small moves made by the Lakers to replace Earl Clark and Metta World Peace if amnestied as well as other fill ins.
The Houston Rockets made some noise in the playoffs last year but will do more than just that next season. With Howard and James Harden the Rockets have a great duo who can compete for at least the fourth spot in the Western conference playoffs. There are reports that Omar Asik does not want to play behind Howard and there might be a trade for Josh Smith with the Atlanta Hawks or the New Orleans Pelicans for Ryan Anderson but nothing official has been reached.
With this being his third team in three years Dwight has to prove he is worth all of this. He left the Orlando Magic, a team he went to the NBA finals with, he left one of the most successful franchises in the world in the Lakers and now will join the Rockets where he has an opportunity to once again become the top big man in the league and immediately compete for a championship. Win and he will look at this as one of the best decisions he has ever made. Lose and he will be looking back at the options that he had and what could have been if he had chosen to go down a different path.