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Lakers sign Theo Ratliff, tell him to go easy on Bynum's knees in practice

Jul 23, 2010, 10:31 AM EDT

Thumbnail image for laker-logo.jpgThe Lakers signed another big man, someone who can come off the bench and protect the rim.

Theo Ratliff will not bring the high-quality iPod playlist that Josh Powell had in the Lakers locker room, but on the court the defensive-minded Ratliff should be a solid addition playing the same role. Ratliff reached a one-year, $1.35 million deal with the Lakers.

What the Lakers want and need is a guy who can play a few minutes, help fill in during injuries, and no be on a mistake-heavy rookie learning curve.

Here is the official quote from Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak: “Theo has long been considered one of the best defensive big men in the league. He is a consummate professional and a welcome addition to our team. Together with Bynum, Gasol, Odom and Artest, he gives us a formidable and deep front line.”

  1. rx - Jul 23, 2010 at 12:05 PM

    Wyoming Cowboy! Go Pokes!

  2. Tim lang - Jul 23, 2010 at 12:08 PM

    Look out miami here come the lakers.

  3. jblakers42 - Jul 23, 2010 at 12:24 PM

    omg……..we gone be a BEEEAAAASSTT next year
    we just signed MATT BARNES from ORLANDO and 15 year vet THEO RATLIFF to back up BYNUM at center
    RATLIFF rebounds and block shots
    our defense will be downright scary from all over the court….
    the paint, the wing, the perimeter, ARTEST, BARNES, BYNUM, GASOL, ODOM, RATLIFF, and KOBE lockin down on D….
    this offseason was about improving our bench and we have definitely met that match and then some…..
    now when the starters leave the game, our bench can sustain or even build on leads………
    and BYNUM, I think he’s going to emerge on defense and become that force in the paint that will shut down all penatration through the lane
    so MIAMI, D-WADE, LEBRON, BOSH, get some of this heat we are about to unleash on you (no pun intended)
    KOBE will get ring #6, tying him w/alpha and omega (JORDAN)
    and I’m gonna be at that parade representing as a lifelong laker fan since JAMES WORTHY was drafted back in 1983

  4. Craig W. - Jul 23, 2010 at 12:32 PM

    Something people are not talking about…Phil Jackson is now going for ring #12. If he gets it he passes…who?…Why Bill Russell. Now he would stand alone in NBA history.

  5. wondahbap - Jul 23, 2010 at 1:04 PM

    Here come the Lakers? I didn’t know they left.

  6. Zachariah Blott - Jul 23, 2010 at 2:50 PM

    The Lakers already had the best frontline in decades. Adding Ratliff, Barnes, and possibly rookie Derrick Caracter just makes it ridiculous. Full analysis here:

  7. stiltman - Jul 23, 2010 at 3:46 PM

    Best frontline in decades? They’re not even the best front line in this decade-plus with Duncan and the Admiral together, or Shaq in his prime plus whoever. Go back another decade and we could get Olajuwon and Barkley or Thorpe, go back another one from there and you’ve got Parrish-McHale-Bird. They’re the best frontline now, sure… but the state of frontcourt play in the NBA right now is sad enough that Wilt could have scored 60 a game on these guys.

  8. jblakers42 - Jul 23, 2010 at 3:57 PM

    Wilt wouldn’t score 60 or average fifty like he did back in the day if he played in today’s league……loll…
    or the league of the 80’s, 90’s, or now…
    first, nba coaches wouldn’t allow that to happen
    back in the day, doubles teams were not being implemented so WILT played against man to man coverage w/guys 4-5 inches shorter than him…….all he had to do was essentially stand over the top of his opposition and get his shot….
    he would be a great player, i’ll give him his props, but he wouldn’t average 50 plus nor would he average 25 rebounds per
    he would have been a 22-24 ppg, 12 rpg player in the mold of a Patrick Ewing…….
    I would even say that Ewing was the better player because he had more range w/his baseline jumper and he was a better free throw shooter than Wilt was..

  9. stiltman - Jul 23, 2010 at 4:33 PM

    Google up “there will be no more layups in this gym” some time. This happened in Wilt’s late 40s. Think Shaq could pull that off in another 8 years or so? I sure don’t. And in an era where the only thing that stopped Shaq in his prime was Shaq himself, I fail utterly to see what would have stopped Wilt. If Dwight Howard had Jordan’s leaping ability and will to score (even if only down low) nobody would stop him either.

  10. Zachariah Blott - Jul 23, 2010 at 5:18 PM

    If you think Wilt is so great, you should look up how many shots he put up a game, how good the competition was in a league made up of lumbering white guys (see also: could never go off on Russell who was 4 inches shorter), and the pace back then. Phoenix and Golden State would have been the slowest teams by a mile in the 60’s. In his epic 50 points per season, he shot 51% from the field and didn’t even win the MVP. Walt Ballamy averaged a 31-19 in his rookie season that year! There’s a reason Wilt was traded in his prime for pennies on the dollar.

  11. HB Rick - Jul 23, 2010 at 8:13 PM

    Been a Laker fan for more than 40 yrs – you guys are right about Wilt…not that great. One championship with my all time fav Jerry West leading the way as usual. His fallaway bank and finger roll wouldn’t work today. Would still be a rebounding force at 280 lbs but Shaq would have murdered him. And JB is right that Ewing was a better player. Wilt was the last guy up the floor and wasn’t very agile. A great one in his day though.

  12. Nick - Jul 23, 2010 at 8:56 PM

    Phil has already passed B. Russel. He has 13 rings, 11 as a coach and 2 as a player.

  13. Zachariah Blott - Jul 23, 2010 at 10:46 PM

    Two of Russell’s rings were as a player-coach, so he kinda has 13 (11 as a player, 2 as a coach) as well, and he certainly didn’t have anyone like MJ or Shaq doing the hard work. And he also didn’t have the NBA/Stern making sure he won some of those, either.
    What was the free throw discrepancy in the 4th quarter of Game 7 again? 21 to 6…hmmm, not at all suspicious.

  14. Genero - Jul 24, 2010 at 12:21 AM

    To be fair, Russell had several hall-of-famers for teammates (i.e., Cousy, Havlicek, Sharman, K.C. Jones, Sam Jones, etc.)

  15. Zachariah Blott - Jul 24, 2010 at 1:43 AM

    To be fair, Wilt played with 6 of the NBA’s Top 50 players and Russell played with 4. And look at how the Celtics did the year after he left, the year before he showed up, in the one Finals he was injured, and in games he missed during his career. It’s not good. He was the reason they were so good – there’s not really a lot of debate on this if you’ve researched the NBA in the 60’s.

  16. TRUEnbaFAN - Jul 28, 2010 at 3:16 PM

    well to be fair guys wilt was better than russel in offense but russel was a better team player thats why he one more. And for people that keep saying that game 7 was the refs fault and look at the free throws well thats b.s. cus what about game 1 in the 2008 finals the lakers had no free throw attempts at all but boston was the more”physical” team so game 7 in 2010 was fair and boston just made stupid mistakes and fouls cus they couldn’t stop our team!

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