Janis Carr of the Orange County Register Blog wrote:Luke Walton didn’t play at all in the first half of Wednesday’s preseason opener and only saw eight minutes, 45 seconds of action the entire game.
When asked why, Phil Jackson uttered, “‘Cuz.”
Perhaps better insight could be gleaned from his comments about many of the young guys on the training camp roster, such Tony Gaffney, Mickael Gelabale and Thomas Kelati, who all had either more or just slightly less, minutes on the court than Walton, a six-year veteran.
“You want to reward the young players who have worked hard in practice,” Jackson said. “They put their time in on the floor and they need a time to shine on the floor a little bit and get a feel for it. So that’s always nice to have that opportunity for them.”
Janis Carr of the Orange County Register Blog wrote:Phil Jackson has plenty of memories of the once Fabulous Forum, ones created as a player and coach.
As a player, he helped the New York Knicks defeat the Lakers on their old home court for the 1973 NBA championship. Eighteen years later, he would win another NBA title at the Forum as head coach of the Chicago Bulls.
So what’s his best memory of the legendary arena, where players such as Wilt Chamberlain, Jerry West and Magic Johnson left indelible marks?
“I think the rats. There were very large rats that ran around under the bleachers,” Jackson said wryly. “There were quite a few of them.”
His tone then turned serious and said that the two championships is “probably what you remember those most of all.”
The Lakers return to the Forum for a preseason game Friday, 10 years after leaving Inglewood for Staples Center as part of their 50th anniversary celebration.
Rumor has it nothing much has changed in the venerable arena, where a church now resides. Not the seats, the carpet or even the locker rooms. The showers reportedly have not been turned on since the Lakers left.
“As a visitor playing against the Lakers there was always a mystique about playing there and going to the Forum Club after the game,” said assistant Brian Shaw, who played at the Forum as both a member of the Boston Celtics and Lakers.
“I have nothing but good memories about the place.”
Apparently more than Phil.
Kevin Ding of the Orange County Register Blog wrote:Q: What are the chances Ron Artest shoots better than 45.3 percent from the field, his career high for a full NBA season?
A: 89 percent.
There’s no doubt that Artest can top his career average of 42.2 percent with the talent around him and the open shots the triangle offense will give him. (He did have some triangle training in his early NBA years in Chicago, remember.)
But can he be as efficient as ever?
Consider that Trevor Ariza shot 46 percent from the field last season, even though he wasn’t great from 3-point range (until the postseason) at 31.9 percent. It was a mere exhibition game on the second night of a back-to-back, but it’s worth noting that Ariza just shot 1 for 11 in his latest Rockets outing.
For lack of better options, Artest regularly had to create stuff in Houston, where even Tracy McGrady — who is supposed be more adept at it — has never done better than 43.1 percent for a season. The Lakers know Artest will drift outside the offensive system here, too, but they rightly believe that he is controllable in that sense.
He will jack some stuff up, for sure, but the guy is a good shooter. He has shot 35.8, 38 .0 and 39.9 percent on 3-pointers over the past three seasons. For comparison’s sake, Kobe Bryant has shot 34.4, 36.1 and 35.1 percent. For their careers, both are at 34 percent.
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