theo-ratliff
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Thursday , Nov , 18 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Lakers interested in Erick Dampier?

The Lakers will talk to the representative for free-agent Erick Dampier, though it might not be a good match for either side. 

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: To be in demand.

For years, Erick Dampier was a bit player. However, the NBA loves size, so Dampier, at 7-0 and 300 pounds, always had a seven-figure job.

Sometimes he played. Most of the time, he sat.

Everything changed last summer, though. The Charlotte Bobcats acquired Dampier in a trade with the Dallas Mavericks, exercised an out-clause, and waived the final year of his $13 million pact.

Charlotte gained cap space. Dampier became, and still is, a free agent.

While the 35-year old hasn’t been making the free agent rounds like LeBron James, he has been connected to several teams.

For instance, Miami, a contending squad, had interest. Houston and Toronto have also been linked to the veteran.

Yesterday, the internet exploded with reports the Los Angeles Lakers were considering Dampier’s services.

It may not be a fit, though. The Lakers need a short term fill-in because Andrew Bynum and Theo Ratliff are injured, while Dampier will want greater security.

Still, Dampier should enjoy being in demand. He may never experience it again.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Tuesday , Nov , 02 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Are ‘The Renegades’ key to Kobe and Lakers Three-peating?

Just one week into the season, Lakers coach Phil Jackson has already coined a nickname for his team's energetic bench: The Renegades.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Never argue with a Zen-Master, especially one with 11 championship rings.

Phil Jackson is right: the Los Angeles Lakers made three subtle moves this summer to solidify their bench, and counter the national headlines made by their eastern rivals.

First, they signed Steve Blake. He’s a feisty, intelligent table-setter, who’ll fill-in and eventually replace veteran Derek Fisher.

Second, they inked giant Theo Ratliff. He’s 7-2. And has a massive wingspan. When the tin-man, Andrew Bynum, is hurt, Ratliff can clog the middle against bigger posts.

Finally, Matt Barnes was brought-in. The former Mohawk can guard and play multiple positions; stretch opposing defenses with his range; and, most importantly, brings grit and toughness.

Blake, Ratliff, and Barnes fit perfectly next to Shannon Brown, a dynamic open-court player, and Sasha ‘The Machine’ Vujacic.

Of course, the piece de resistance is Lamar Odom, a versatile forward who is always a candidate for Sixth Man of the Year.

Odom has taken his game to another level after spending his summer leading Team USA to the gold medal at the FIBA World Championship in Turkey.

So renegades is an interesting moniker for this group. Whatever the nickname, they'll be a big part of the Lakers' quest to three-peat.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.