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http://www.latimes.com/sports/baske...eadlines-sports-nba-lakers&ctrack=1&cset=true

LAKER REPORT
Bryant Defense Has Fallen Off
By Mike Bresnahan
Times Staff Writer

March 23, 2005

SALT LAKE CITY — Kobe Bryant has been an NBA all-defensive team member the last five seasons. The streak very well could end there.

Bryant has not been immune to the defensive problems that have attached themselves to the Lakers this season.

In the last two games alone, ordinary players have hit Bryant for season-highs: Reserve guard Ronald Murray had 25 points Sunday for the Seattle SuperSonics and Gordan Giricek scored 22 Tuesday for the Utah Jazz.

Bryant often is guilty of reaching for the ball instead of sliding his feet. He has also gambled and gone for steals, unsuccessfully, more often than in the past.

"He just kind of shakes his head or says he was trying to get something going or whatever," Coach Frank Hamblen said. "There are times to gamble and times when not to gamble."

Bryant's gambles haven't paid off. He is averaging 1.32 steals this season, down from 1.75 last season and 2.21 in 2002-03.

Against Utah, Bryant had 25 points in the first half, but Giricek had 14. Giricek had been averaging 8.3 a game before Tuesday.

"It's never about mano-a-mano, especially against a team like Utah," Bryant said. "Somebody's down screening, somebody back-picks, [other players] have got to be able to read what's coming."

The Laker defense has suffered as a whole.

"We watch film and we talk about it," Hamblen said. "It's just a mind-set. In the past … one of the reasons why we were so successful winning, we had guys that played defense and covered for another. If a guy gambled, if a guy made a mistake, then there was always somebody there. We always had Shaquille [O'Neal] in the middle. We don't have that now."

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Kobe is still an above average defender but after reading this I can't help but thinking that Shaq might have had more than a little to do with Kobe looking very good defensively in the past. Post your comments here.
 

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I can't help but thinking that Shaq might have had more than a little to do with Kobe looking very good defensively in the past.
Duh? lol
 

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Tragedy said:
Yeah but I'm saying you'll have a lot of people saying it was Kobe and nothing but Kobe. I've heard it several times. It's perplexing that some people don't/didn't see it. :whoknows:
 

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Turkish Delight said:
Why are there so many Lakers threads in the NBA General Forum?
Because you can't post in the Laker forum UNLESS you are idolizing Kobe and/or the Lakers. Otherwise, your posts are locked or deleted. So the only ones frequenting the Laker forum are the same 6-7 posters; to mingle and discuss with others, they troll the other boards looking for any post about the Lakers/Kobe.
 

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IV said:
Because everybody wants to talk about Kobe.
I guess, with the state of affairs Kobe and HIS team are in, any talk --- good or bad --- is better than nothing at all.

Must keep his name out there because, at this point, Kobe is old news. Maybe this summer he will create more drama in his life. And, the beat goes on ...
 

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lakers are 3rd worst defensive team in the league this year. kobe can't hide from that. but there's more to la's defensive woes than kobe, obviously. something's broken, and kobe playing lock-down defense won't make a huge impact there, when they have a systematic problem playing basic defense as a unit.

this affects everything they do. utah's ppfga yesterday was 1.39. that's absurd. giricek was 1.00.

la's the 7th best offensive team in the league, but their defense puts so much pressure on their offense that they just don't keep pace. it seems to fall on kobe, but there's only so much you can do when the other team's scoring all the time. kobe had a ppfga of 1.50 yesterday, and he's still open for criticism, because they can't win when their defense as a unit is just atrocious.
 

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Dynasty Raider said:
I guess, with the state of affairs Kobe and HIS team are in, any talk --- good or bad --- is better than nothing at all.

Must keep his name out there because, at this point, Kobe is old news. Maybe this summer he will create more drama in his life. And, the beat goes on ...
Old news? He's front page news on this site, every single day.
 

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There needs to be a sticky on the general forum: Kobe 24/7 for discussion anything to do with Kobe's games including in game commentary, shot selection, and post game interviews.

Soon it will have more posts then all the other threads combined
 

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Turkish Delight said:
Why are there so many Lakers threads in the NBA General Forum?
Actually, i find these threads very entertaining :rofl: When the Lakers where winning, there where Laker Haters bashing the team, now that the Lakers are having a loosing season, there's still bashing the team (especially Kobe).

The Laker forum should just read: The Los Angeles Lakers: "The Team You Love To Hate"
 

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ghiman said:
The Laker forum should just read: The Los Angeles Lakers: "The Team You Love To Hate"
You can't put that quote in The Laker forum because it would look negative for The Lakers and you would be banned from there.
 

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tatahbenitez said:
You can't put that quote in The Laker forum because it would look negative for The Lakers and you would be banned from there.
:none:
 

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Dynasty Raider said:
I guess, with the state of affairs Kobe and HIS team are in, any talk --- good or bad --- is better than nothing at all.

Must keep his name out there because, at this point, Kobe is old news. Maybe this summer he will create more drama in his life. And, the beat goes on ...
what a troll. Whats the point of make 2 consecutive posts replying to the same exact thing in a different way.
 

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There should be two Lakers forums, one for the fans and one for the haters. Either way, like kflo pointed out, the Lakers defense as a team has been pitiful, and individual defense is going to look bad any way you slice it if your team defense isn't good.
 
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