JGC wrote:Well, I don't want to turn a Kobe MVP Material thread in to a Harden/Martin debate. I personally think Harden makes OKC better than Kevin Martin does in the long run and I'm sure most people would agree, but it's really moot at this point anyway. My original point was that they didn't make the trade to get better and we can both agree they didn't get better overall and so it's not like Durant's numbers are being elevated by improvements made to the team.
I didn't say they were "improved".... I just don't agree with the assessment that it was a huge downgrade. Martin does a lot of things Harden doesn't and vice versa. The gap on offense isn't as big as many think.... and the issues surrounding Harden and being on the bench were coming to a head.... that's addition by subtraction because the situation that existed in the past wasn't going to exist in the future. OKC had to make a choice and they did. They kept Westbrook..... Getting Martin has changed the team but the jury is out if it was a negative or lateral move. We'll see.
To be fair, I didn't really say Martin was a huge downgrade for OKC. But I do think he is a downgrade for them. I just don't think they make him better in the long run. Now you're right that things weren't working out for Harden over there and things were coming to a head and you're right that things that existed in the past weren't going to exist in the future. You're also right that they had to make a choice. The Lakers were in the same situation in a way with Shaq. My only point was that the trade wasn't made, to make OKC better it was made out of necessity and so far it seems to be working out for them and I'm sure Martin's numbers have a lot to do with playing with a guy like Durant.
JGC wrote:I agree about Durant not kicking his teammates butt either but exactly how is that a sign of good leadership? Are all players who kick their teammates butts showing a form of good leadership? I'm not just not so sure I buy that one. The demonstrative thing, sure, I get that, but I think leading by example would be a much more effective strategy.
Kobe leads in the same manner as Larry Bird IMO.... Durant is a more like Dr. J.... who didn't really get a team anywhere until Moses came along while being an All Time Great. I believe it's a great sign of leadership.... actually the best kind... do as I do stuff. Kobe does it and expects it from the others on the team.
Yeah, well, we're not going to agree that the way Kobe leads is the best kind of leadership. I think that style can however, be effective with the right personnel. I'm not sure if its universal application makes sense for everyone though. I'd think a more adaptive form of leadership makes the most sense but that is neither here nor there. I actually think Kobe leads a lot like Michael Jordan as well. Some people would say MJ was a great leader, and others would beg to differ I guess.
JGC wrote:As far as Kobe making his teammates better. He USED to do that. It was a knock on him that was untrue. But it seems like it might be the case now. For instance, in the past, whenever a free agent or traded player came here and played with Kobe (in the post Shaq era) they almost always became a more efficient offensive player. Mihm, Butler, Odom, Kwame, all these guys shot career highs in FG% as Lakers. I think Atkins shot his second best career FG% for a season. Smush Parker had this best years as a Laker. In all of Derek's 17 NBA seasons, want to know which one he shot the best in? His first year back as a Laker along Kobe.
Well.... you've got a rep here for this line of thought. I for one don't agree with it. Playing on the floor with Kobe makes you better for a number of reasons. Let's look at an "older" example..... Kareem. He didn't pass a lot... it wasn't his job.... most of the "Showtime" years he walked up the court and that was only if the fast break was thwarted.... yet when he was in the post guys like Worthy got to be one of the 50 greatest when he was barely one of the 150 greatest.... Magic had wide open lanes to drive while being 6'-9" tall and 230 lbs... Scott got wide open shots because everyone was focused on Kareem. Kobe does the same things for his teammates. He's the focus of the defense at all times because he's the best overall player on our team.... period.
I don't disagree with any of most of this. In theory it makes sense. In the past, it has shown to be true. In recent seasons, I just don't really see it to the same degree. Who is playing better after coming here? I certainly thought Sessions did but that's really about it.
Rooscooter wrote:Your comment about "recent years" is puzzling.... outside of Barnes who have we signed that has been worth a damn to make better?
Not sure what is puzzling about it. The centerpiece of my point is that I don't think Kobe has made his teammates better the last couple of seasons. It doesn't matter if they are worth a damn. Mihm never was, neither was Kwame or anyone else. But when they came here, they all played better than they had. They shot more efficiently than ever before. That is what I would previously call the Kobe effect. What happened to it? You're saying it's there. Ok, with whom? It's nice to talk about Kareem and theorize, but I'm not seeing it in action as of late. It should be obvious the way it was obvious back in the day with him. It should be as obvious as it is obvious when you see Nash steps on the court, boom, people play better. That impact is not there the way it used to be.
Rooscooter wrote:If you are talking about Howard I'm not sure what are getting at either. The ones who thought Howard was going to come in here and get 15 shots a game and be the focus of our offense are the ones not seeing things clearly IMO.
Well, no, I've been one who said I didn't think he could reproduce his Orlando numbers since he is no longer a focal point of the team on offense. I have been on record however, with saying he should average career highs in shooting playing along a threat like Kobe. That hasn't happened.
In fact, while Howard's scoring efficiency is still relatively good, his FG% is his second worst so far this season. Now some of that may have to do with his injury, but I'm not exactly seeing him get the ball in very favorable situations either. I'm not seeing the "Kobe effect" we used to see with players. Kwame, Mihm, Odom all shot career highs in FG% when they came to play with Kobe.
Rooscooter wrote:Bynum got about 13 shots a game with 5.6 FTA's a game. In our previous scheme I expected about the same number of attempts or less because of the fact we have so many other options on this team. He is at about 11 shots and 10 FTA a game or roughly the same total number of touches.... The new scheme isn't nearly as post up dependent so it would seem that his touches in the post will be fewer.... and they are. Kobe is getting more touches...... and most of them is much better scoring areas.... thus his efficiency is higher this year.
As long as Kobe is on the team he will demand to be the primary scorer until HE doesn't want that anymore.... judging from his comments last year about "eating first" that isn't going to be anytime soon. The only player that isn't able to take advantage of the better looks his presence creates this year is Pau.... MWP is better, Howard is about the same while recovering from injury and 90% of that is without Nash who should help even more.
As for the "carrying" comment.... Kobe has been forced into that role this year... that's my take... it seems that you feel like he's doing that for his own edification.
It does seem like Nash & Howard being here has made Kobe better, there is no doubt about that. You can see it in the numbers and you can see it on the floor as well. The whole point has been about seeing it the other way around.
Completely disagree that Kobe has been forced in to that role. By whom? By himself? I mean, why is Kobe the only player in the league who is held at gunpoint and forced to take 41 shots in a game?
The biggest misconception about my issues with Kobe's shooting is that it is for his own edification. I don't think that. At all. I think Kobe does it with great intentions actually and even with the team first and foremost in mind. I think he really thinks, this is the best thing for the team, is for me to put them on my back offensively and I'll carry the offensive load when we miss a couple of shots. Whether that's the appropriate strategy for elevating the overall play of this team is what I question.