So I just finished my second go around watching a deferential Pau Gasol upstage D’Antoni’s bogus game plan of permanently starting Earl Clark over the Goat-Like Spaniard and am now ready to provide some legitimate insight
Game by game, the decision to nullify Pau’s impact entirely grows exponentially unbearable. And as I watched D’Antoni nonchalantly sit Gasol for the first seven minutes of the 1st and 3rd quarters, a number of integral points concerning this dumbfounding disaster became apparent. So, without further ado, here are a some key Dimensions to the Dilemma. Hit ‘Em
Its apparent that Pau lacks Girth…entirely. We’ve heard the man explicitly voice his displeasure with the situation he’s in. And while its important that we’ve seen the displeasure officially disclosed, the fact that Gasol has allowed Mike D’Antoni to assert such dominance over his confidence and exterminate it completely has been, from a basketball standpoint, nothing short of emasculating. Sure, I applaud his character and the class with which he’s accommodated to D’Antoni’s moronic, inapplicable style of coaching. But with all due respect to the stellar contributions of Earl Clark, has a four time All-Star, two time champion and future Hall of Famer ever sat back and let an incompetent basketball mind make him feel like an undesirable commodity? No. Would exhibiting some Demarcus Cousins and ferociously lashing out against everything Jerry and Jimmy Buss have let perspire over the past two months contribute to the odds of his being traded by the deadline? Probably. But the whole basis behind D’Antoni’s feeling uneager to favor Gasol over the prototypical staple hybrid four (Earl) has been Pau’s exertion of minimal energy when he’s on the floor. Such a reaction would certainly inflate the Spaniard’s testosterone count and force Mike to actually acknowledge that he MUST adjust conceptually and incorporate Pau into his game plan in order for the Lakers’ dreams of an eight seed to come to full fruition. Until then, it is Gasol and his baby dick that allows D’Antoni to continue to find excuses as to why Clark appears as the better fit
Kobe Bryant is finished with standing up for Pau. Outside of Jimmy Buss’ evaluating D’Antoni as the best solution to LA’s 1-4 record (the culprit behind the once avoidable ordeal) the silence of Kobe Bryant has been the most perplexing aspect of this dilemma. We’re all aware of Mamba’s incredible basketball intellect. Would he have ever condoned Hakeem and Ralph Sampson not playing major minutes alongside one another? Absolutely not. So then why won’t Kobe voice his opinion and stand up for Pau? Why does he appear to willfully accept D’Antoni’s favoring of style over roster? Does he not see how effective lineups with Pau and Dwight look when they run what they’re suppose to run (the big to big screens, the running numerous UCLA cuts out the high post, the improvisational pin downs that scream we’re bigger and better than you and we know it)? Is he too fed up with having to camouflage his frustrations about “playing down” to a shitty Howard in order to ensure the big fella doesn’t start pouting and blaming everything on everyone but himself to even care about Pau? Couldn’t tell you. All I know is that without Bryant’s vocal support, D’Antoni won’t consciously recognize his incompetence and Pau will forever remain in Kurt from Good Burger’s Grinder until its time to shop him to another city.
Dwight Howard either sucks, cannot play with high IQ guys, or is just silently concealing his terrible recovery from back surgery. If you haven’t realized that the inefficiency of lineups with both bigs has everything to do with how inexcusably terrible D12 has been playing as of late then shame on you. And last night, Dwight further proved that ballin’ on a tight budget fails to benefit Pau’s chances of remaining in Lakerland. I counted three different times in which they initially executed the Pau/Dwight high to low action to perfection, but failed to finish the DARN play because a.) Dwight looked severely immobile and couldn’t establish proper positioning and b.) Dwight was forced to hit the free throw line because he decided to throw up a flimsy jump hook instead of powering through and hammering on Joakim’s head. What happens next? D’Antoni irrationally jumps to the conclusion that he needs to pull Pau from the game, Chicago makes their run, and Dwight continues to appear oblivious to the fact that it his looking like a Kosta Koufas, not Pau, that deters their productiveness alongside one another. So until Dwight regularly stops getting stripped when trying his best to be a traditional low post scorer and starts dunking all over everyone then consider him a culprit behind Pau’s ineffectiveness.
P.S. Kobe must have made Dwight cry like Nancy Kerrigan after the game for that second quarter three minute stretch where Nazr Mohammad forced two turnovers, two missed finesse layups instead of dunks that made you cringe and an embarrassing weak side block from Nate Robinson after the whistle. That man has been B O O T Y as of late.