Sunday , May , 29 , 2011 J.N.

Be real – 2011 Kobe’s Lakers are in trouble even with Mike Brown.

Laker haters unite! This is your time. Hate hate hate hate! Did anyone peep Sugar Shane Mosley’s wife during the Pacquiao fight? Johnny Gill’s song was all I heard in my mind “My My My You sure look good tonight.” She sure was. Her name is Bella Gonzalez. She was screaming passionately at Sugar Shane to fight. I know Laker fans were screaming at the Lakers to fight just like her. Oy dios mios! I still haven’t gotten over the sight of her. Wow!

The Lakers hired Mike Brown – former close friend of LeBron James. The man got some job security and money; 4 years, $18 million.

I had to think about this for awhile before the NBA Finals against the Mavericks and Heat start. Simply put – Kobe’s Lakers got waxed. There is nothing else to say. The Dallas Mavericks truly eviscerated the Lakers out of the playoffs. That was the end of the Phil Jackson era, but Kobe Bryant’s reign as the moneymaker in the playoffs ends, too. Admit it. He is no longer “that” player.

Bryant did not average 25 points in the 2011 playoffs. He averaged 22.8 for the entire playoffs and 23.2 against the Dallas Mavericks. These types of players usually turn it up compared to the regular season. Kobe did not do that. He is officially on the decline. Let’s break it down:
Kobe barely got to the line in the 2nd round against the Mavericks.

  • Game 1 – 4 out of 5
  • Game 2 – 4 out of 5
  • Game 3 – once
  • Game 4 – 3 out of 4
     

Yep, Bryant’s slashing days are over. He’s just a very good jump shooter. Other things I noticed:

  • Kobe wasn’t aggressive in the post. There is no statistic for this. This is where you needed to watch.
  • Slow. He lost two steps.
  • Kobe was bad defensively. People were driving past him without trouble notably Chris Paul and Jason Terry.

He was abysmal in games 2 and 4 against Hornets and in games 3 and 4 against the Mavericks:  11 points, 19 points, 17 points, and 17 points. That is terrible for Kobe’s level especially in the playoffs. That cannot happen, but it did.

Assists total per game in 2011 playoffs: 5,2,2,8,4,2,0,3,6,1
Assists were down, which means he neglected his playmaking duties even with a stacked roster of Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum.

The hiring of Mike Brown does not make the Lakers better although the key is, in anything, is to get better. Brown is a solid hiring, but the Lakers were going to hire a retread no matter what happens because this is a veteran group. A hot new assistant becoming coach will not win over Kobe and the rest. A proven retread is the best they can do with that in mind. If you think about it, Brown brings consistency with defense. That’s something that faded away under Phil Jackson – something that Mike Brown cannot bring back. Kobe’s Lakers past their peak awhile back. When Nowitzki’s Mavericks dominated 4-0, the jig is up.

Do they blow it up? Nope. Some pieces have to be removed slowly, but blowing it up is stupid because that will not attract Chris Paul or Dwight Howard and that is who they are gunning for. As long as Kobe is there, they cannot do that. Kobe is not young to go through another rebuild.

Kobe Bryant, right now, cannot carry the load anymore. Do not expect him to average 25+ points next season considering his knee problems. It’s almost “Brandon Roy.” He also had trouble averaging 25.3 points this year. His minutes per game went down as well as he was logging 33.9 minutes per game. A friend told me that Kobe will be averaging 25 again because he shoots a lot. The current facts say “no.” Bryant is on the decline, plain and simple.

Kobe’s Lakers has to be blown up if they cannot get Chris Paul or Dwight Howard on the team. Then the whole thing is finished. Laker fans better pray that Andrew Bynum produce like D-12 to keep the ship intact because acquiring Dwight Howard/Chris Paul on the Lakers is not guaranteed. Let’s just wait and see.

 

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