After last night's destruction at the hands of the Oklahoma City Thunder, the Los Angeles Lakers may have officially hit rock bottom. They are currently on a season high, six game losing streak, are in 11th place in the Western Conference, and are five games behind the 8th and final playoff spot.
And while many an analyst, player, or fan, such as Magic Johnson, may have given up hope and written them off, Jim Buss is absolutely right. There is no need to panic just yet. Here are ten reasons why.
10. They could get hot in Cleveland. The Lakers must now go on the road to play in Cleveland on Sunday. D'Antoni told the players their, "season starts on Sunday". And he may be correct. The Lakers are 4-6 in their last ten meetings with the Cavaliers. So there is a chance the losing streak will end as soon as tomorrow night.
9. It could be worse. While they may be in 11th place, at least they are not Dallas, Sacramento, or New Orleans. The Mavericks are in 12th place and are 2-8 in their last ten games, the Lakers are 3-7.
The Kings are 5-5 in their last ten, but they're in 13th place and may be moving to Seattle, where it rains a lot, and us SoCal residents don't care for the rain.
The Hornets are 6-4 in their last ten, but they are still dead last. The Lakers still have a four game cushion over them.
8. They could go to Kmart. To add injury to injury, the Lakers just found out yesterday that they will be without the services of Jordan Hill for the remainder of the season. Ah, yes. The old season ending hip surgery. Hill was the Lakers' most productive player off the bench and played the important role of frontcourt backup since Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol are both already out indefinitely due to injury.
But Kenyon Martin is still available. A rebounding big that plays defense, and wouldn't be described as "soft". But attention Kmart shoppers, the Knicks are already considering adding him to their roster.
7. They could make a trade. They wouldn't even have Jordan Hill if they hadn't traded Derek Fisher last season. There's always some NBA GM that is willing to take on a big contract for an aging, declining, former all-star. Speaking of Pau Gasol, they've considered it many times before and are most likely still more than willing to part ways with the big Spaniard. It may be time to say "adios" unless they can do better for $2.50 and a jawbreaker.
6. "Two and a half" men. Jim Buss clarified the Laker management mindset when they chose to hire Mike D'Antoni. Although he stated nobody's better than Phil, Buss claimed they went with D'Antoni since Steve Nash is their point guard and he flourished under that system, and it's the way they want to play. They are 10-16 under D'Antoni, 3-9 with Nash in the starting lineup. Is that really how they want to play?
The good news is that the Lakers' misery can't last more than 2 1/2 more seasons.since they are both under contract till then. Nash's contract is guaranteed. But you can also guarantee that the Lakers will have a clean slate and a fresh start at the end of the 2014-2015 season, especially since Kobe should be gone by then too.
5. Fighting is healthy in a relationship. As long as it's friendly fighting. So what if Kobe and Dwight may not be seeing eye to eye? It just means they are both passionate about winning. They should be angry. It means they care and they can now work together to find a solution, and a way to coexist.
It's not like they're feuding. But even if they were, it's not like the Lakers would ever trade the most dominant center in the league just because Kobe couldn't coexist with him. Ooh wait, I forget about Shaq. But we've seen Shaq play. Shaq has four rings. And Dwight Howard is no Shaq.
4. They're rich. The Lakers' Time Warner Cable deal is worth a billion cagillion dollars, and as I've heard my father state on a few occasions, "money doesn't buy happiness, but it helps..."
The Lakers are not afraid to spend money especially if it translates into winning a championship. Since the deal is actually worth 3 billion over the next twenty years, it should ease the pain of possibly missing the playoffs with a team that has over $100 million payroll, and will face a stiff luxury tax which is dollar for dollar over the salary cap.
3. Kobe and Vanessa have reconciled. There will be no divorce. Kobe Bryant thanks us all for our support and I quote, "when the show ends and the music stops, the journey is made beautiful by having that someone to share it with..."
How insightful of the Black Mamba. Even if the Lakers are done and there are no more championships to be won and his rings begin to lose their luster, at least he still has the old ball and chain, till death do them part.
So if this decision isn't about the money, or the mansions, or the kids, it just might be about love. And after all, if you didn't already know, a happy wife is a happy life.
2. Phil Jackson and Jeanie Buss got engaged. Although he may have 11 rings as a head coach and two as a player, the Zen Master really got it right when it came to life's true meaning, by winning the heart of the boss' daughter, ex-boss that is.
Jeanie tweeted, "Phil finally gave me that ring I wanted."
Although he may have gotten passed over for the job, he certainly got the girl. And who knows, if he's part of the family that may lead to ownership, which theoretically means he could end up hiring himself one day.
1. Jim Buss is the Lakers' executive vice president of basketball operations. Jim is at the helm now and he really doesn't think there is need to panic. After his recent interview, it's obvious that he is knowledgeable and more than competent enough to run the lakers organization.
He was able to name most of the Laker roster by listing some of their free agent acquisitions over the summer. He was familiar with their record by expressing that they were five or six games under .500, they were 15-20 at the time, but they are 15-21 now. And he's 95 percent sure that Dwight will stay by expressing, "I can't control what he does, but I can sure make a great argument." Need I say more?.
Although things are looking kind of bleak right now, the future isn't, especially if you look at the bright side.